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Disappointing PMI hits SHFE gold, copper prices

By Michael Bellart (Global Times)

13:22, September 21, 2012

Chinese copper and gold futures gave back Wednesday's gains after a highly watched preliminary indicator of Chinese factory output remained low.

The most traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange (SHFE) fell 2 percent to close at 59,310 yuan ($9,408.31) per ton, after jumping 1.56 percent Wednesday.

The contract drifted lower throughout the session, after opening 0.68 percent below Wednesday's closing price.

HSBC and Markit Economics Thursday released their flash purchasing managers' index (PMI) for September. The overall index ticked up to 47.8 from last month's final reading of 47.6. However, the headline reading still remained well below 50, showing that manufacturing activity was contracting. Stocks of finished goods came in above 50, suggesting that inventories continued to grow, according to analysts from the Australian bank ANZ.

The most traded SHFE gold contract fell 0.96 percent to 361.92 yuan per gram after gaining about 1 percent in the previous session. The contract opened 0.39 percent lower and fell gradually over the session.

Optimism from the Japanese central bank's monetary easing announcement Wednesday didn't last after the Asian markets closed. Reuters reported that profit taking had contributed to the decline Thursday.

The Comex December gold contract rose to a seven-month high of $1,779.50 per ounce late Wednesday, but retreated before the end of trading. The contract was trading about 0.4 percent lower when the mainland markets closed Thursday.

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