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LONDON: Copper drifted lower on Friday, hovering below the $10,000 level it briefly broke through a day earlier as the dollar strengthened and some speculators locked in profits.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange had shed 0.8% to $9,803 a tonne by 1600 GMT after five sessions of gains. It rose to as high as $10,008 on Thursday, close to an all-time record of $10,190 hit in February 2011.

LME copper, which has gained 27% so far in 2021, was still on track for a monthly gain of 9%, boosted by optimism around prospects for a quick global economic recovery as well as tightening supply.

“There’s been a bit of profit-taking in copper, we’re going into the holiday season in China,” said Robert Montefusco at broker Sucden Financial.

Chinese bourses will be shut from May 3-5 for the Labour Day break, while the LME will be closed on May 3 for a bank holiday.

“But people still seem to be quite bullish. There’s a lot of bullish talk from the banks and trade houses about the green energy targets,” Montefusco said.

Citibank said this week there was a good chance copper could hit $12,000 a tonne over the next three to six months.

The dollar rose, extending gains after upbeat data on US personal income and spending, making commodities priced in the US currency more expensive for buyers using other currencies.

Factory activity in top metals consumer China expanded at a slower-than-expected pace in April.

Tin prices surged after Malaysia Smelting Corp, the world’s third largest tin producer, told clients its smelting operation was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Three month tin hit $29,225 a tonne, the highest since May 2011, before reversing and slipping 0.3% to $28,405.

LME aluminium fell 0.5% to $2,406 after touching a fresh three-year peak, lead gained 1.3% to $2,143, nickel advanced 2.4% to $17,665, the strongest in nearly two months, while zinc gave up 0.2% to $2,912.

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