Iron ore scales 7-week peak on China property stimulus hopes

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Iron ore futures rose on Tuesday to their highest levels in about seven weeks, as hopes grew for more property sector-focused stimulus measures in top steel producer China.

Steel benchmarks and other steelmaking ingredients in China also advanced as real estate stocks listed in Hong Kong jumped nearly 8% on hopes that Beijing would soon roll out supportive measures to bolster the embattled property sector.

The most-traded September iron ore on China’s Dalian Commodity Exchange ended morning trading 3.1% higher at 780 yuan ($109.71) a tonne, just below the session high of 780.50 yuan, its strongest since April 19.

On the Singapore Exchange, the steelmaking ingredient’s benchmark July contract was up 2.9% at $108.10 a tonne, as of 0425 GMT. It earlier hit $108.15, its highest since April 21.

SGX iron ore has rallied 18% from a low close to $90 in late May, as disappointing Chinese economic data, including those pointing to a still weak property sector, fuelled speculations that the world’s top steelmaker would unveil additional stimulus measures.

On Friday, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter, that regulators were considering a package of measures including further relaxing restrictions for residential purchases.

However, analysts said investors should temper their optimism.

“We continue to believe investors should look through the near-term volatility,” National Australia Bank analysts said in a note.

“A stimulus-led revival of China’s property sector could drive upside risk to iron ore prices from here, but timing remains difficult to predict.”

Rebar on the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose 1.2%, hot-rolled coil climbed 0.9%, wire rod SWRcv1 added 0.1%, and stainless steel advanced 1.3%.

Coking coal and coke on the Dalian exchange rose 1.2% and 2.5%, respectively.

Source: Reuters

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