Base metals: Copper, nickel fall on profit booking

NEW DELHI: Nickel prices were down by 0.19 per cent to Rs 842 per kg in futures trading today as speculators booked profit at prevailing levels.

At the Multi Commodity Exchange, nickel for delivery in April fell by Rs 1.60, or 0.19 per cent to Rs 842 per kg in business turnover of 1,556 lots.

In a similar fashion, the metal for delivery in March was trading lower by Rs 1.40, or 0.17 per cent to Rs 837.30 per kg in 4,436 lots.

Market analysts attributed the weakness in nickel futures to profit-booking by participants at existing levels.

Copper futures traded 0.06 per cent lower at Rs 430.50 today as speculators reduced their exposure at prevailing levels even as metal strengthened overseas.

In futures trading at Multi Commodity Exchange, copper for delivery in April fell 25 paise, or 0.06 per cent, at Rs 430.50 per kg in a business turnover of 1,079 lots.

Metal for delivery in far-month June fell by a similar margin to quote at Rs 435.50 per kg in 17 lots.

Analysts attributed the fall in copper futures to profit-booking by speculators who scaled down their positions at the existing levels but a firm trend at the London Metal Exchange (LME) as the dollar weakened.

A weaker greenback makes metals cheapper for holders of other currencies and support prices.

At the LME, three-month copper was up 0.2 per cent at USD 6,665 per tonne.

Lead prices eased by 0.48 cent to Rs 155.55 per kg in futures market today as investors reduced exposure amid weak demand in the spot market.

At the Multi Commodity Exchange, lead for delivery in March declined by 75 paise, or 0.48 per cent to Rs 155.55 per kg in business turnover of 396 lots.

Similarly, the metal was trading lower by 65 paise, or 0.41 per cent to Rs 156 per kg in 139 lots.

Analysts said offloading of positions by participants owing to tepid demand from battery-makers in the spot market led to the slide in lead prices in futures trade.