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Rebar Extends Three-Week Rally as Stronger Economy Lifts Demand

Steel reinforcement-bar futures in Shanghai rose, extending a third weekly gain, on optimism that a strengthening economy may support demand from the world’s biggest consumer of the material used in housing and railroads.

Rebar for May delivery, the most-active contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange, rose 0.5 percent to 3,722 yuan ($613) a metric ton. Futures climbed 0.9 percent last week.

China’s trade surplus widened last month to the largest in more than four years, in a sign global demand is helping sustain a recovery in the world’s second-biggest economy. Crude steel consumption next year may grow 3.2 percent to 715 million tons, while iron ore prices will remain high, Xinhua News Agency reported Dec. 6 citing Li Xinchuang, head of the China Metallurgical Industry Planning and Research Institute.

“The improving economic outlook is supporting Shanghai rebar at the moment,” said Long Qingqing, a Shanghai-based metal analyst at Huatai Great Wall Futures Co.

Iron ore for May delivery on the Dalian Commodity Exchange rose 0.4 percent to 945 yuan a ton. The raw material for immediate delivery at Tianjin port tracked by The Steel Index fell 0.2 percent to $139.20 on Dec. 6.

Rebar for immediate delivery tracked by Beijing Antaike Information Development Co. gained 0.1 percent to at 3,555 yuan a ton today.

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