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Nickel Leads Metals Lower Before Possible U.S. Cuts: LME Preview

Nickel led industrial metals lower on speculation automatic spending cuts set to begin March 1 will damage the U.S. economy.

Market News:

-- Asian stocks and U.K. equity index futures fell on concern

-- Italy’s inconclusive election triggered renewed market

-- Led by the dollar, there isn’t a measure of money in the U.S.

-- Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke’s efforts to rescue

-- Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart

Metals News:

-- Rio Tinto Group’s crucial meeting with Mongolia tomorrow

-- While $17 billion of lost market capitalization has cost CME

-- Japan’s output of copper and copper-alloy fabricated products

-- One global aluminum smelting company asked two buyers in Japan, Asia’s biggest importer, for a 6.3 percent increase in

Metals Prices:

-- Copper slipped 0.1 percent at $7,824.75 a metric at 7:18
a.m. on the London Metal Exchange. Relative strength index 34.
-- Aluminum retreated 0.5 percent to $2,026 a ton. RSI 36.
-- Nickel declined 0.7 percent to $16,588 a ton. RSI 33.
-- Lead dropped 0.5 percent to $2,281.75 a ton. RSI 36.
-- Tin was down 0.1 percent at $23,126 a ton. RSI 27.
-- Zinc fell 0.4 percent to $2,080 a ton. RSI 39.

Other markets:         Last          % Change   % YTD

U.S. Dollar Index     81.79            0.2        2.5
Crude Oil            $92.45           -0.7        0.7
Gold              $1,592.14           -0.1       -4.9
MSCI World Index   1,389.46           -0.1        3.8

Economic Events:
                                    Survey    Prior      Time
                                                       (London)

US House Price Index                 0.6%      0.6%     14:00
US Richmond Fed Manuf. Index        -4       -12        15:00
US Consumer Confidence              62.0       58.6     15:00
US New Home Sales                    3.0%      -7.3%    15:00

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