Base metals in China fell across the board on Wednesday, pressured by a strong US dollar and a slump in stock markets and oil prices, but benchmark London copper rebounded after losses in the previous session.
The most-traded Shanghai copper contract SCFcv1 finished the morning session down 0.6 percent at 52,210 yuan ($7,620.67) a ton, while three-month London copper was up 0.6 percent at $6,709 a ton.
Overall sentiment was bleak after Wall Street sank for the third consecutive session on losses in heavyweight technology companies, and as oil futures hit lows not seen since June.
“There is more talk of ‘risk-off’, but this still feels more like an unwinding of overbought positions, rather than a generalized flight to safety,” said Robert Carnell, head of research for Asia-Pacific at ING.
The greenback held its gains as risk appetite waned, making dollar-denominated metals more expensive for holders of other currencies.
“While prices crumbled…trading volumes remained very thin, suggesting that many are sitting on the sidelines for the time being,” ING commodities strategists said in a note.