Norilsk Gains Most in Month on Indonesia Ore Ban: Moscow Mover

OAO GMK Norilsk Nickel, the world’s largest nickel producer, advanced the most in more than a month after Indonesia said it will ban nickel-ore exports in 2014, signaling the price of the metal may rise.

Norilsk climbed 2.3 percent to 5,078 rubles by 2:52 p.m. in Moscow, the biggest jump since Oct. 25. The number of shares traded was equivalent to 65 percent of the three-month daily average. The stock added 2.3 percent to $15.40 in London.

The Indonesian government agreed with nine factions in parliament to ban all mineral-ore exports after Jan. 12, Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Jero Wacik said to reporters in Jakarta today. About 90 percent of the 55 million tons of nickel-rich iron ore Indonesia exports annually goes to China, according to Norilsk data. China uses it to produce nickel pig iron, which competes with more expensive refined nickel.

“This is a key positive driver for Norilsk Nickel,” Luis Saenz, head of equity sales and trading at BCS Financial Group in London, said by e-mail. “If Indonesia indeed discontinues nickel ore supplies to China, this will likely drive nickel prices higher.”

Nickel climbed as much as 2 percent on the London Metal Exchange to $13,918 a metric ton today, the highest level in more than three weeks. The contract dropped 19 percent this year and is the worst performer among the six main metals on the LME amid record stockpiles.

United Co. Rusal, the world’s biggest aluminum producer, rose 2.4 percent to 92.69 rubles in Moscow. Indonesia exports bauxite to the world’s aluminum industry.

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