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Base metals fall as Delta variant sparks recovery concerns

Industrial metals declined on Tuesday as a surge of the Delta coronavirus variant across the world raised doubts of a sustainable global economic recovery.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange CMCU3 fell 0.4% to $9,667 a tonne by 0250 GMT, aluminium CMAL3 was down 0.4% to $2,603.50 a tonne, nickel CMNI3 dropped 1% to $19,320 a tonne and zinc CMZN3 shed 1.4% to $3,007 a tonne.

The most-traded September copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange SCFcv1 fell 1% to 70,870 yuan ($10,961.09) a tonne, nickel SNIcv1 dropped 1.5% to 143,550 yuan a tonne, zinc SZNcv1 lost 1.5% to 22,250 yuan a tonne and aluminium SAFcv1 was down 0.7% to 19,815 yuan a tonne.

A dampened global growth outlook would reduce demand for industrial metals that are used across a wide range of sectors including manufacturing, construction and transportation.

Meanwhile, U.S. manufacturing activity grew at a slower pace in July for the second straight month as raw material shortages persisted, though there are signs of some easing in supply-chain bottlenecks.

* Peruvian residents who have been blocking a road used by the Chinese-owned Las Bambas copper mine for the past week suspended their action on Monday after the country’s prime minister promised to resolve the conflict between them and the company.

* Yangshan copper premium SMM-CUYP-CN rose to its highest since April 7 of $52 a tonne, indicating rising demand for importing the metal into China, as copper stockpiles in China’s bonded warehouses have been dropping for three weeks straight, SMM data showed. SMM-CUR-BON
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Mai Nguyen in Hanoi; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.)

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