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Nickel Leads Industrial Metals Lower on China Curbs: LME Preview

Feb. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Nickel slumped 1.9 percent, leading declines in industrial metals after China called for property curbs.

Market News:

-- Asian stocks tumbled from an 18-month high and commodities fell as China called for property curbs and Federal Reserve minutes showed policy makers advocating more flexibility in economic stimulus. South Korea’s won weakened. {NSN MIK2I66JTSEH <go>}

-- Americans, by a margin of more than 3 to 1, expect the housing market to improve over the next 12 months, part of a broader brightening in their outlook for the economy, according to a Bloomberg National Poll. {NSN MIJHOO6JTSEK <go>}

-- As New Zealand joins more than a dozen nations decrying the strength of their currencies, gauges of price swings show no panic in the more than $4 trillion-a-day foreign-exchange market. {NSN MIK02E6JTSEY <go>}

-- Singapore will probably force companies to further reduce their reliance on foreign labor in the 2013 budget, after a public backlash against the influx of workers led to the biggest demonstration in more than a decade. {NSN MIJWGN0YHQ0X <go>}

-- The Federal Reserve signaled it may consider slowing the pace of asset purchases as officials extended a debate over whether record monetary easing risks unleashing inflation or fueling asset-price bubbles. {NSN MIJS900D9L35 <go>}

-- A leading index for China’s economy rose at a faster pace in January, suggesting the nation’s growth rebound is maintaining momentum. {NSN MIJSW40UQVI8 <go>}

Metals News:

-- Aluminum inventories in China’s main trading regions are estimated to have climbed to a record as supply growth outpaces demand in the largest user and producer, adding to a global glut of the lightweight metal. {NSN MIK3LD0D9L35 <go>}

-- Steel reinforcement-bar futures in Shanghai fell for a second day as the Chinese government moved to curb property speculation, reducing demand for the building material. {NSN MIJSFQ6KLVRW <go>}

-- When BHP Billiton Ltd.’s new chief executive officer Andrew Mackenzie got his doctorate in chemistry in 1980, the ground-breaking research attracted the attention of oil producers including Chevron Corp. {NSN MIK3OB0UQVI9 <go>}

Metals Prices:

-- Copper declined 0.4 percent at $7,924.75 a metric at 6:55
a.m. on the London Metal Exchange. Relative strength index 35.
-- Aluminum slid 1 percent to $2,081.75 a ton. RSI 45.
-- Nickel slumped 1.9 percent to $16,840 a ton. RSI 32.
-- Lead retreated 1.2 percent to $2,323 a ton. RSI 41
-- Tin was down 1.6 percent at $23,355 a ton. RSI 29.
-- Zinc fell 0.8 percent to $2,115.50 a ton. RSI 46.

Other markets:         Last          % Change   % YTD

U.S. Dollar Index     81.19            0.2        1.8
Crude Oil            $94.38           -0.9        2.8
Gold              $1,566.30            0.1       -6.5
MSCI World Index   1,403.37           -0.5        4.9

Economic Events:
                                    Survey    Prior      Time
EC PMI Manufacturing                 48.5     47.9       09:00
US Consumer Price Index               0.1%     0.0%      13:30
US Initial Jobless Claims           355K     341K        13:30
US Philadelphia Fed                   1.1     -5.8       15:00
US Existing Home Sales               -0.8%    -1.0%      15:00
US Leading Indicators                 0.2%     0.5%      15:00

To contact the reporter on this story: Claudia Carpenter in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Carpenter at

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