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LME Nickel Stockpiles Jump to the Highest Since June 17, 2011

Nickel stockpiles in London Metal Exchange-monitored warehouses climbed to the highest level since June 17, 2011.

Stockpiles rose 1.7 percent to 111,174 metric tons today and have increased 8.1 percent this month, according to LME data on Bloomberg. The warehouse in Vlissingen, Netherlands, added 2,514 tons, according to the bourse.

Lower demand and higher supply are adding to the build-up. In May, global refined nickel production rose to 143,000 tons while demand fell to 135,700 tons, according to an e-mailed report from the Lisbon-based International Nickel Study Group yesterday. Output has exceeded consumption for the past three months according to INSG data.

“We are still yet to see a hint of any demand improvement,” London-based Leon Westgate, an analyst at Standard Bank, said in an e-mailed report on July 16. “Ample stocks of ore and metal in China, together with overcapacity outside China, means that the nickel market is unlikely to get particularly tight for the foreseeable future.”

On the London Metal Exchange nickel prices are down 13 percent this year making it the worst performer among the six industrial metals on the bourse. It rose 0.9 percent to $16,241 a ton by 12:02 p.m. in London.

Copper, lead, aluminum, zinc and tin stockpiles monitored by the LME all fell today, according to bourse data.

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