Copper prices ease as dollar hits two-month peak

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Updates prices in paragraphs 2, 7 and 8

May 30 (Reuters) -Copper prices fell on Tuesday as the U.S. dollar hit a two-month peak, making the greenback-priced metal more expensive to holders of other currencies.

Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange CMCU3 fell 0.4% to $8,100 a tonne by 0743 GMT, while the most-traded July copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange SCFcv1 dipped 0.2% to 64,800 yuan ($9,136.01) a tonne.

The dollar index =USD reversed course in the Asian afternoon trading hours to rise to its highest level since mid-March.

Risk sentiment initially improved after President Joe Biden and Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy agreed to temporarily suspend the debt ceiling to prevent a default, but it still faces a rocky path to get approval from Congress.

"The strengthening of the U.S. dollar has put pressure on the non-ferrous (metals) sector including copper," said Huatai Futures in a report.

"However, when copper prices fell, downstream buying interest was also stimulated. Inventory continues to be depleted. Copper prices are expected to maintain a volatile pattern," it added.

LME nickel CMNI3 declined 0.3%to $21,110 a tonne, tin CMSN3 increased 2.3% to $25,415 a tonne, while aluminium CMAL3 fell 1.3% to $2,207.50 a tonne, zinc CMZN3 shed 1.6% to $2,307 a tonne and lead CMPB3 lost 0.9% to $2,060 a tonne.

SHFE nickel SNIcv1 rose 1.5% to 163,790yuan a tonne, tin SSNcv1 jumped 2.9% to 208,900yuan a tonne, while aluminium SAFcv1 eased 0.6% to 17,960 yuan a tonne, lead SPBcv1 dipped 0.2% to 15,215 yuan a tonne and zinc SZNcv1 fell 0.7% to 19,300yuan a tonne.

The premium of LME cash tin over the three-month contract CMSN0-3 was at $368 a tonne on Friday, the highest since June 2022, indicating tightening nearby supply.

The International Tin Association said last week a detailed plan to suspend mining in a region in Myanmar controlled by an ethnic Wa militia force had been published this month, raising tin ore supply concerns.

However, SHFE tin inventories SN-STX-SGH, at 8,915 tonnes, were still 62% higher than from the start of the year, and LME tin stockpiles MSNSTX-TOTAL have also been rising.

($1 = 7.0928 yuan)

Reporting by Mai Nguyen in Hanoi; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Varun H K

For related news and prices, click on the codes in brackets:
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