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EU bond yields weigh on metals

By Michael Bellart  (Global Times)

08:14, June 20, 2012

Commodity futures were split Tuesday, with grains and soybeans rising and base metals falling as Spanish and Italian borrowing costs jumped Monday, squelching any optimism following Sunday's Greek elections.

The most active copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFE) fell 0.53 percent to close at 54,670 yuan ($8,601.76) per ton. The October contract opened 0.24 percent below Monday's closing price, following the overnight drop to the benchmark three-month copper future on the London Metal Exchange (LME).

The LME contract was trading at $7,500 per ton after the Chinese mainland markets closed Tuesday, down 0.1 percent for the day.

"The relief rally in commodities early Monday after the reasonably positive Greek elections gave way to renewed caution," wrote Natalie Robertson, a commodity analyst for ANZ Research.

Copper and other base metals fell after the yields on Spanish and Italian government bonds spiked Monday. The yields are considered a gauge of anxiety about the health of the European financial system.

The yield on Italy's 10-year government bond rose about 16 basis points to 6.08 percent Monday, while Spain's 10-year government bond yield jumped 27.4 basis points to just under 7.16 percent Monday.

Seven percent was the threshold where Greece, Ireland and Portugal had to seek international bailouts, according to Reuters.

Chinese rice, corn and soybean futures performed better Tuesday. The most traded rice contract rose 1.45 percent Tuesday on the Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange.

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