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Zinc finds support, aluminium struggles: Macquarie LME poll


The outlook for zinc is much improved, whilst most of the audience at this year's Macquarie LME summit put aluminium as the likeliest underperformer in the next 12 months, the bank said in a note Tuesday.

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The summit, hosted by Macquarie at the start of London Metal Exchange week -- the annual gathering of the metal and mining industry in London -- can help give a glimpse into the outlook of its participants ahead of the week's events.

Zinc was favored long on a 12-month view, which Macquarie's head of commodity research Colin Hamilton put down to Glencore's supply cuts last week.

Aluminium took the prize for the most favored short in the year ahead.

"Despite the ongoing and conspicuous issues for fundamentals across base metals markets, the overall mood was not as bearish as we might have expected," said Hamilton.

"While concern over Chinese economic growth and metals demand was clear, the consensus for growth, albeit slower, persisted," he added.

After being the favorite at last year's event, nickel was relatively flat.

And copper "seems to be coming back in favour," according to the bank.

However, as an indication of the participants' accuracy -- which this year totalled 400 -- all base metals prices are currently lower than 2014 expectations.

"Here's to a better year of predictions," concluded Hamilton.

--George King Cassell,
--Edited by James Leech,