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Aluminum rises on smelter closure and fear of shortages

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LONDON, Aug 17 – Aluminum prices rose on Wednesday after news that a European smelter will close due to high energy prices, raising concerns about possible shortages.

* Benchmark aluminum on the London Metal Exchange was up 0.9% at $2,413 a tonne by 1000 GMT.

* Aluminum, the most energy-consuming metal, has fallen in recent months along with other industrial metals on concerns about slowing global demand. It has lost 40% since hitting an all-time high in early March.

* Norsk Hydro said on Wednesday it will close its majority-owned primary aluminum plant in Slovakia at the end of September due to high electricity prices.

* “This smelter news and the possible impact on supply are giving prices support even though they remain concerned about the demand outlook,” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank in Copenhagen.

* “These developments show that this market is not only driven by demand, but also by supply, and that it is increasingly affected by these very high energy prices.”

* In China, the most-traded aluminum contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose as much as 4.3%, its biggest gain since October 2021, before giving back some of its gains and trading 3.75 higher. % at 18,660 yuan a ton.

* Power controls in China amid its worst heat wave in 60 years have also sparked concerns about metal supply in the world’s top producer.

* Among other base metals, copper fell 0.2% to $7,963 a tonne, zinc fell 1.9% to $3,601.50 and lead fell 0.4% to $2,155.50, but the Nickel was up 0.5% at $22,335 and tin was up 0.5% at $24,725.

* To view up-to-date base metal prices:

– COPPER

– LEAD

– TIN

– NICKEL

– ALUMINUM

– ZINC

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