METALS-Shanghai copper jumps most since Oct on short-covering ahead of holiday

holiday@ (Adds Shanghai closing prices, updates London prices) BEIJING, Feb 14 (Reuters) - Shanghai copper prices rose for a second session on Wednesday, registering their biggest daily leap since October, as traders took up new positions in the metal before the Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) closed for a national holiday. Market open interest on Shanghai copper hit 811,170 lots on Tuesday, the highest since January 2016, ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday in China beginning on Thursday. Traders were likely covering their short positions ahead of the week-long holiday, which could put them at some risk due to volatility in London Metal Exchange (LME) prices. London copper prices earlier rose back above the level of $7,000 a tonne that has provided support so far in 2018, before easing back as the dollar trimmed its losses. "Copper has made a strong attempt to regain $7,000 as the big figure and there certainly has been Chinese buying in front of tomorrow's New Year shutdown," Malcolm Freeman, CEO of Kingdom Futures, wrote in a note.


* SHFE COPPER: The most-traded April copper contract on the ShFE ended up 1.8 percent at 52,790 yuan ($8,323.87) a tonne for its highest close in a week and biggest daily jump since Oct. 17.

* LME COPPER: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange gave up early gains to trade down 0.1 percent at $6,979 a tonne, as of 0824 GMT.

* NICKEL/ZINC: Shanghai nickel closed up 3.2 percent, tracking a 2.7 percent rise in London on Tuesday, while zinc finished 2.3 percent higher on indications of a tight market.

* ALUMINIUM: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he was considering a range of options to address steel and aluminium imports that he said were unfairly hurting U.S. producers, including tariffs and quotas.

* CENTRAL ASIA: Base metals miner Central Asia Metals (CAML) is on the hunt for a new copper project in Southern Africa for up to $400 million in what would be its first foray into the continent, its chief executive said.

* COBALT: The London Metal Exchange could remove companies from its list of approved metal suppliers if they fall short of industry standards following an outcry about cobalt mined by children in Africa, three sources said.

* For the top stories in metals and other news, click or


* Asian share markets turned mixed on Wednesday as investor nerves were strained ahead of a U.S. inflation report that could soothe, or inflame, fears of faster rate hikes globally.


BASE METALS PRICES 0818 GMT Three month LME copper 6994 Most active ShFE copper 52780 Three month LME aluminium 2128.5 Most active ShFE aluminium 14100 Three month LME zinc 3459 Most active ShFE zinc 26650 Three month LME lead 2545 Most active ShFE lead 19310 Three month LME nickel 13500 Most active ShFE nickel 103490 Three month LME tin 21600 Most active ShFE tin 148800



($1 = 6.3420 Chinese yuan)

(Reporting by Tom Daly, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)