Lead Leads Metals Lower as Strengthening Dollar Erodes Appeal

Lead fell for the first time in five days, leading most base metals lower, as a stronger dollar lowered the attractiveness of commodities priced in the greenback as an alternative investment.

Lead in London slipped as much as 0.6 percent and has lost 8.2 percent since the start of the year. The Bloomberg Commodity Index has dropped 6.7 percent in 2014, while the dollar traded near the highest level since 2009 against a 10-currency basket.

“The dollar gives me a headache, it is too strong,” said Chae Un Soo, a metals trader at Korea Exchange Bank Futures Co. “It is weighing on metals prices.”

Lead for delivery in three months on the London Metal Exchange fell 0.3 percent to $2,038 a metric ton at 3:16 p.m. in Hong Kong.

Copper in London dropped 0.1 percent to $6,684.25 a ton, while in New York the December futures slipped 0.2 percent to $3.028 a pound. In Shanghai the metal for delivery in January rose 0.4 percent to close at 47,320 yuan ($7,724) a ton.

Aluminum in London dropped 0.2 percent to $2,039 a ton. Spot prices are supported above $2,000 until the end of the year, with the global market in a 1.4 million-ton deficit in 2014, Steve Hodgson, director of sales and marketing at United Co. Rusal, said in a call to investors today.

On the LME, nickel rose, tin fell and zinc was little changed.

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