Tin Declines Amid Speculation Indonesian Shipments to Continue

Tin fell for the first time in three sessions as concern eased over a ban on sales of the metal at PT Timah, Indonesia’s biggest producer.

PT Timah said last week it suspended offers because supplies at current prices are unprofitable. The company said Monday it will still honor contractual shipments to customers in Asia and Europe. Tin jumped 3.5 percent in the previous two sessions, the biggest such gain since Dec. 29. Indonesia is the world’s top exporter of the metal.

“People are now wondering if it will work or not,” Herwig Schmidt, head of sales at Triland Metals Ltd. in London, said by phone of PT Timah’s halt.

Tin for delivery in three months dropped 0.8 percent to settle at $18,125 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange.

Aluminum and lead also fell as concerns mounted over the prospects for a debt deal between Greece and euro-area finance chiefs. A euro-area proposal for Greece to observe its existing bailout commitments is “absurd” and “unacceptable,” a Greek government official said. The official, who insisted on not being further identified, issued an e-mailed statement as euro-area finance ministers met in Brussels and reviewed a draft text regarding the Greek conditions.

Weekend discussions failed to make sufficient progress to break an impasse between Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s government and Greece’s international creditors, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said in an interview with Deutschlandradio. A gauge of industrial metals traded on the London Metal Exchange fell 5.7 percent this year, partly amid concerns that Europe’s debt crisis will curb demand.

“There is nervousness ahead of the Greek deadline,” Magmura Kamanova, a broker at Sucden Financial Ltd. in London, said Monday by e-mail. “A lot of Chinese clients are already on holidays, so the market is very quiet.”

The Comex floor was closed Monday for the Presidents’ Day holiday, while markets in China will be shut from Wednesday for the Lunar New Year holiday.

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