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LME Base Metals Rise on Vaccine Euphoria

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London base metals rose across board on Monday, lifted by the euphoria about the rollout of COVID19 vaccines and optimism over prospects of an additional U.S. economic stimulus and as the European Union and the UK agreed to extend trade talks.

Markets cheered news about U.S. regulators giving emergencyuse authorisation for the PfizerBioNTech vaccine, seen as pivotal to ultimately halting a surging pandemic that is claiming more than 2,400 American lives a day.

More positive news flow is likely on this front with Modernas vaccine likely to receive emergencyuse authorisation by Friday, said Tapas Strickland, economist at National Australia Bank.

Another reason is that the EU and the UK agreed to extend trade talks again, averting nearterm risks of a hard exit, Strickland added.

Nickel led the gains, with higher stainless steel prices in China and news that a nickel smelter in New Caledonia was running low on ore giving the metal used in stainless steel and car batteries a further boost.

Threemonth nickel on the London Metal Exchange rose 2 to 17,625 by 0536 GMT, after hitting 17,780 earlier in the session, its highest since Oct 11, 2019.

The mosttraded February nickel on the Shanghai Futures Exchange climbed as much as 3.4 to contracthigh 133,190 yuan 20,376.04 a tonne, advancing for a sixth consecutive session.

FUNDAMENTALS

The nickel smelter of Eramet SAs SLN subsidiary in New Caledonia is running low on ore due to widespread protests over the sale of another…

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