Copper Extends Fall in Price

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    Copper has tumbled to a one-week low, hit by China demand jitters and lower equity prices in Shanghai, before staging a late short-covering rally.

    Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange closed with a 0.7 per cent gain at $US5,347 after touching a low of $US5,251.

    Traders said that a key settlement date on Wednesday and tight supplies for nearby delivery were behind copper's rise in afternoon trade, but that any recovery is likely to be brief as the focus remains on concerns over top consumer China.

    Disappointing industrial output and investment data over the weekend reinforced the view that China, which accounts for about half of the world's copper consumption, could miss its seven per cent growth target this year.

    "For base metals the sustained weakness in China is the main factor and we are still seeing Chinese equity markets falling," Danske Bank analyst Jens Pederson said.

    Three-month aluminium slipped 0.5 per cent to $US1,613 a tonne after hitting $US1,590, its lowest since September 2.

    Zinc ended 0.8 per cent down at $US1,738 a tonne. It had touched $US1,698, its lowest in more than two weeks, earlier in the session as the market fretted about rising stocks in LME-approved warehouses.

    Lead added 0.7 per cent to $US1,687 a tonne and Nickel gained 1.8 per cent to $US10,100.

    Tin was untraded at the close but bid 0.2 per cent lower to $US15,550 after hitting a three-week high of $US15,645.

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