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METALS-Shanghai aluminum slips to 2-week low as China stocks climb

BEIJING, Jan 3 (Reuters) - Shanghai aluminum prices fell in early trade on Friday, having hit a more than two-week low under 14,000 yuan ($2,009.96) a tonne overnight on signs that stocks in top consumer China were rising again after a protracted drop over 2019. Chinese aluminum inventories <0#SMM-ALINV> climbed by 18,000 tonnes, or 3%, to 610,000 tonnes between Dec. 26 and Jan. 2, according to industry data provider SMM. The Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) is due to report its own stocks data later on Friday. ShFE aluminum stocks <AL-STX-SGH> were at 185,127 tonnes on Dec. 27 and fell more than 70% last year. Stocks tend to rise in the run-up to China's Lunar New Year holiday, which this year falls in late-January, as construction activity slows.

FUNDAMENTALS

* ALUMINIUM: The most-traded February aluminum contract on the ShFE fell as much as 1.1% in night-time trading to 13,960 yuan a tonne, its lowest since Dec. 17, and stood at 14,000 yuan, as of 0215 GMT. Three-month aluminum on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.3% at $1,800 a tonne.

* ALUMINIUM: Chinese supply, meanwhile, continues to rise, with Henan Shenhuo Group putting its new smelter in Yunnan into production on Dec. 31.

* ALCOA: U.S. aluminum producer Alcoa said it had agreed to sell its Gum Springs waste treatment facility in Arkansas to Veolia ES Technical Solutions for $250 million. The plant has traditionally processed spent potlining for the North American smelter industry.

* OTHER METALS: London copper eked out a 0.1% rise to $6,196 a tonne, but the LME complex was broadly lower, with nickel losing 0.6%, lead down 0.5% and zinc falling 0.4%. ShFE copper slipped 0.4% to 49,030 yuan a tonne.

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DATA/EVENTS AHEAD (GMT)

minutes from its meeting of December 10-11

PRICES

BASE METALS ARBITRAGE

3

3

3

3

3 ($1 = 6.9653 Chinese yuan)

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