On Tuesday, London aluminum prices edged higher, supported by concerns about supply disruptions as ceasefire talks between Russia and Ukraine stalled and investors considered the fallout from record coronavirus cases in top consumer China.
Three-month aluminum (CMAL3) on the London Metal Exchange (LME) was up 0.3 percent at $3,532 per tonne, close to a near two-week high set on Monday.
The most actively traded May aluminum contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SAFcv1) fell 0.3 percent to 22,950 yuan ($3,608.32) per tonne. The world is attempting to adapt and learn how to accept COVID as a part of daily life. Xi Jinping’s request to combat COVID with minimal disruption to the economy and society is a great example.
The war in Ukraine remains a key support pillar for metals and has arguably contributed to the majority of volatility in recent weeks.
While the conflict entered its fourth week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that negotiating an end to the war would be impossible without meeting Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin. World output outside of China is already struggling, and further supply losses raise the prospect of a larger deficit.
Aluminum stocks in LME-registered warehouses (MALSTX-TOTAL) were at 704,850 tonnes, the lowest since 2007. Last week, inventories in Shanghai exchange warehouses (AL-STX-SGH) fell 4.2 percent to 333,823 tonnes.
LME copper (CMCU3) fell 0.5 percent to $10,240 per tonne, while lead (CMPB3) increased 0.4 percent to $2,267, zinc (CMZN3) fell 0.8 percent to $3,907, and tin (CMSN3) increased 0.6 percent to $42,005.
The global nickel market saw a surplus of 6,000 tonnes in January, compared to a deficit of 5,300 tonnes in the same period last year.
Global primary aluminum output fell to 5.114 million tonnes in February from 5.236 million in the same month in 2021.
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