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LONDON: Copper prices extended a rebound on Tuesday as speculators adjusted positions on hopes for a demand revival in top metals consumer China.

Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) climbed 1.9% to $8,965.50 a tonne by 1700 GMT after gaining 1% on Monday.

The contract, however, was down 2.7% on a monthly basis for its first such decline since October.

US Comex copper futures gained 2.1% to $4.09 per lb.

LME copper bounced from an important level for investors watching technical signals, said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank in Copenhagen.

Gains are being driven by profit-taking by speculators who had taken short positions as well as some fresh longs by investors taking advantage of a cheaper level to enter the market, he added.

Copper demand in China remained weak in February, weighing on prices, but analysts expect the Chinese economy to recover strongly from as early as March, with the government likely to roll out more stimulus at the National People’s Congress.

The Yangshan copper premium, which reflects demand to import copper into China, rose to $26.50 a tonne on Monday for its highest since Feb. 1.

Among other metals, LME aluminium rose 0.4% to $2,371.50 a tonne and zinc gained 0.6% to $3,006.50 while nickel slid 3.2% to $24,685, lead eased by 0.3% to $2,105.50 and tin dropped 2.6% to $24,805.

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