LME metals see sterling benefit from stronger dollar


Metals were largely steady on Tuesday on the LME, with a stronger dollar against the pound keeping sterling prices higher.

The official exchange rate used by the LME for its official prices was 1.5387 yesterday down from the 1.5525 of Monday. The value of the pound fell after construction data on Monday fell to a 10-month low in September.


With Italy’s bonds being downgraded by rating agency Moody’s from Aa2 to A2 with a negative outlook overnight, the euro crisis has taken another turn for the worse. However, this move had been expected and today will see whether the markets have already priced it in.

However, yesterday Chile’s mining minister Hernan de Solminihac said that he expects mining companies in the world’s largest copper producing nation to maintain planned investment worth $67 billion over the next eight years. He added that although there had been some adjustment in the amount of copper China was importing, the change hadn’t been significant.

Copper was down slightly in dollars yesterday to $6,810 from $6,819 on Monday. However, the stronger dollar meant the sterling price increased to £4,426 from £4,392 on Monday.

Aluminium increased to $2,170 (£1,410) on Tuesday compared to $2,158 (£1,390) at the start of the week. Aluminium alloy edged up to $2,170 (£1,397) yesterday from $2,140 (£1,378) a day earlier.

Lead fell to $1,920 (£1,248) from $1,960 (£1,262) the day before. Nickel increased to $18,400 (£11,958) from $18,145 (£11,688) on Monday.

Tin was up to $20,300 (£13,193) on Tuesday from $20,100 (£12,947) on Monday. Zinc fell to $1,857 on Tuesday from $1,870 the day before but the sterling increased a little to £1,207 from £1,205 a day earlier.

Steel was down to $540 (£351) on Tuesday from Monday’s $550 (£354).