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BEIJING: Iron ore futures prices rebounded on Thursday, aided by renewed hope of further stimulus from top consumer China following a speech from a state planning official.

The benchmark February iron ore on the Singapore Exchange climbed 2.48% to $128.9 a metric ton, as of 0811 GMT. Meanwhile, the most-traded May iron ore contract on China’s Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE) ended daytime trade 0.8% higher at 948.5 yuan ($131.85) a ton, erasing earlier losses.

The contract hit its lowest level since Dec. 19 at 920.5 yuan a ton in the morning. China will place greater emphasis on expanding effective demand, developing and strengthening the real economy, an official from the country’s National Development and Reform Commission was quoted as saying by the state media on Thursday.

“There is nothing that’s really new or material (in the latest speech), but the positive stance from the state planner may inject some confidence into the market,” said a Chinese analyst, requesting anonymity as he is not authorised to speak to the media. The rebound in prices came after continued downward pressure.

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