Aluminum in London rose to a one-week high amid speculation that China’s reserves manager will buy the metal from smelters, while zinc gained by the most among six base metals.
Aluminum for delivery in three months advanced as much as 0.6 percent to $1,993 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange, the highest since March 5, before trading at $1,990.25 at 3:19 p.m. Shanghai time. Zinc rose as much as 1.1 percent while copper strengthened as much as 0.5 percent.
The fewest workers on record were fired in the U.S. in January and job openings rebounded, data showed yesterday. Sales at U.S. retailers probably rose 0.5 percent in February, according to a Bloomberg News survey. China’s state reserve bureau will buy 200,000 tons to 300,000 tons of aluminum to support prices, the Shanghai Securities News reported on March 8.
“Positive U.S. data helped a technical bounce, following the recent retreat,” said Xiong Dabiao, an analyst at Minmetals Futures Co. “Expectations for stockpiling aluminum by the reserve bureau has lent support to prices since last week.”
Copper for delivery in June on the Shanghai Futures Exchange gained 0.9 percent to 56,850 yuan ($9,148) a ton.
On the LME, lead and nickel also climbed, while tin was little changed.
— With assistance by Helen Sun