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METALS-Copper easing on firmer Dollar;  China demands hope to offer support

Band Brijesh Patel

June 7 (Reuters)Copper prices fell on Tuesday, weighed down by a stronger dollar, although hopes of a boost in demand as China’s main consumer eased COVID-19 restrictions and lower inventories limited losses.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange CMCU3 was down 0.6% at $9,682.50 a tonne, at 0344 GMT. The most traded copper contract in July in Shanghai SCFcv1 was down 0.1% at 72,690 yuan ($10,909.50) per ton at the midday break.

The dollar continued its overnight rally in Asian trading hours, hitting new two-decade highs against the yen, as concerns about lingering inflation pushed U.S. bond yields higher. USD/

A stronger dollar makes dollar-denominated metals more expensive for buyers using other currencies.

Copper, often used as an indicator of global economic health, jumped 4.4% on Monday to its highest level since April 27 at $9,916.19 on the outlook for strong demand in China.

“Sentiment is bolstered by signs that China is easing pandemic restrictions. Nevertheless, traders are still awaiting more concrete signs that the easing of restrictions will trickle down to construction activity,” the analysts said. ANZ commodity strategists in a note.

CHINA: Beijing and the Shanghai shopping center have returned to normal in recent days after two months of painful closures. Traffic bans were lifted and restaurants opened for dine-in service Monday in most areas of Beijing.

STOCKS: At 140,975 tonnes, copper stocks in LME-registered warehouses have fallen by more than 20% since mid-May. MCUSTX-TOTAL

NICKEL: American Jane Street Global Trading sued the London Metal Exchange for $15.3 million following the cancellation of nickel transactions on the platform owned by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing 0388.HK in March.

* Nickel volumes on the LME fell in April as commodity funds and other participants dumped the metal after a March slump left the market in limbo for more than a week.

PRICES: LME aluminum CMAL3 rose 0.2% to $2,787.50 per tonne, zinc CMZN3 fell 0.3% to $3,861, leading CMPB3 rose 0.1% to $2,217, and tin CMSN3 lost 0.3% to $35,500.

Shanghai Aluminum SAFcv1 fell 0.4%, zinc SZNcv1 decrease of 1.5%, nickel SNIcv1 climbed 0.7%, leading SPBcv1 rose 1.6%, and pewter SSNcv1 decreased by 1%.

($1 = 6.6630 Chinese Yuan)

(Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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