METALS-Bide time as investors digest bearish China, U.S. economic data

Base metals mostly traded flat as investors digested bearish Chinese and U.S. economic data and awaited monthly U.S. nonfarm payrolls data due out later on Friday.

The U.S. Institute of Supply Management manufacturing index fell more than expected overnight, while growth in China’s services sector slowed in July, according to the Caixin/Markit services purchasing managers’ index.

* LONDON COPPER: Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange barely budged from overnight levels, trading at $6,363.50 a tonne at 0700 GMT.

* SHANGHAI COPPER: The most-traded copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange closed 0.18 percent higher at 50,420 yuan ($7,504.65) a tonne.

According to a Reuters survey of economists, the U.S. Labor Department’s closely watched employment report is likely to show nonfarm payrolls increased by 183,000 jobs last month after surging 222,000 in June.

* ALUMINIUM CRACKDOWN: China’s crackdown on its bloated aluminium industry is driving up the share price of the country’s major producers and raising the spectre of a tighter global market that could buoy prices.

* MORE NICKEL: Soaring cobalt prices are prompting Asia’s top battery makers to tweak the recipe for lithium-ion batteries used to power electric cars and mobile phones – reducing the amount of cobalt and adding more nickel.

* SHANGHAI, LONDON ALUMINIUM: ShFE aluminium slipped 0.31 percent. LME aluminium was trading mostly flat at around $1,908 a tonne.

* SHANGHAI LEAD, NICKEl: ShFE lead and nickel ended 0.54 percent and 0.38 percent higher respectively, while tin finished 0.80 percent up.

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Three month LME copper

Most active ShFE copper

Three month LME aluminium

Most active ShFE aluminium

Three month LME zinc

Most active ShFE zinc

Three month LME lead

Most active ShFE lead

Three month LME nickel

Most active ShFE nickel

Three month LME tin

Most active ShFE tin

Source: Reuters (Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Joseph Radford and Subhranshu Sahu)

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