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Aluminium prices hit highest since 2008 on supply fears

Aluminium prices climbed to their highest in more than 13 years on Monday, driven by concerns over supply in China, the world’s biggest consumer and producer of the metal.

The most-traded October aluminium contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange SAFcv1 rose as much as 5.1% to 23,770 yuan ($3,683.27) a tonne, the highest level since March 2008.

Three-month aluminium on the London Metal Exchange (LME) hit its highest since July 2008 at $3,000 a tonne.

Output curbs in China and political turmoil in Guinea – China’s top source of bauxite – have boosted aluminium prices by about 50% this year.

“Power shortages and environmental measures are restricting output in China. Political unrest in Guinea is also threatening to delay the huge pipeline of new bauxite projects that feed aluminium smelters in China,” ANZ analysts said in a note, estimating that more than 1 million tonnes of aluminium output have been disrupted in China this year.

State-backed Chinese research house Antaike this month said that the amount of annual aluminium capacity shut in China this year has exceeded 2 million tonnes and could rise further.

* ShFE aluminium inventories fell to 228,529 tonnes, their lowest since December 2020, while stocks of the metal in the LME warehouses MALSTX-TOTAL have dropped 33% since March to 1.32 million tonnes.

* Copper inventories in warehouses fell to their lowest since December 2011 at 61,838 tonnes. Nickel stocks rose for the second straight week to 8,608 tonnes, but were still hovering near a record low of 4,455 tonnes.

* ShFE copper advanced as much as 3% to 71,800 yuan a tonne, its highest since Aug. 2, while LME copper increased 0.3% to $9,723 a tonne at 0551 GMT.

* ShFE nickel edged up 0.1% to 152,480 yuan a tonne and LME nickel CMNI3 fell 0.8% to $20,230 a tonne while tin SSNcv1 rose 1.4% to 257,450 yuan a tonne.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Mai Nguyen in Hanoi Editing by Devika Syamnath and David Goodman)

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