Reuters

Copper steady; China demand, euro zone crisis weigh

(Recasts, adds comment/detail, pvs Singapore) * China GDP growth in April to June rises 2.2 pct * World stocks, euro fall on bank stress tests By Pratima Desai LONDON, July 18 (Reuters) - Copper was steady on Monday, but expected to come under pressure

Brazil's Usiminas leases iron ore access in $1.16 billion deal

Brazilian steelmaker Usiminas said on Thursday it agreed to pay at least $1.16 billion to have long-term access to iron ore resources, seeking to battle a surge in prices for the key steel ingredient. Usiminas signed an agreement to rent mining rights owned by MBL Materiais Basicos for the next 30 years, it said in a securities filing. Usiminas will also buy 6 million tonnes of iron ore reserves at $12.50 per tonne from MBL, as well as a processing facility.

Limited upside for nickel prices

Nickel prices rebounded from a sharp fall in June, but slow demand and concerns about an impending sharp rise in output will exert downward presure, or at least limit upside prospects in the next month or two. The London Metal Exchange three-months nickel price was last indicated at $23,920 a tonne. "We've got a situation of rising production and slowing stainless demand growth," said independent consultant Angus MacMillan. Against this backdrop, he said prices were more likely to move lower than higher.

NYMEX-U.S. crude edges up on weak dollar

* Dollar weakness supportive to oil prices * Brent August crude contract expires on Thursday * Coming up: EIA natural gas data, 10:30 a.m. EDT Thursday NEW YORK, July 14 (Reuters) - U.S. crude futures edged up on Thursday as the dollar's weakness

Mexico’s Fresnillo to double silver output, becoming world no. 1

Precious metals miner Fresnillo plans to double output at its newly opened Saucito mine in central Mexico by 2015 or 2016 in a second phase of expansion, a company executive said on Tuesday. With the project and other expansion plans, Fresnillo is looking to overtake BHP Billiton, which produces more silver as a by-product from other metals, as the world's biggest overall silver producer. The company's eponymous mine is the world's largest primary silver mine which has been in near continuous operation since 1550.

Australia's ERA Q2 uranium output slides 84%, ups 2011 guidance

Australian uranium miner Energy Resources of Australia on Wednesday reported an 84 percent drop in second-quarter production from three months earlier, blaming voluntary interruptions in production due to safety concerns on flooding, but lifted its full-year production guidance.

Puda Coal says auditor resigns, fiscal 2009 and 2010 'cannot be relied on'

Reuters reports China's Puda Coal said its auditor Moore Stephens has resigned, effective immediately, and the auditor warned that audit reports for fiscal years 2009 and 2010 should no longer be relied upon. In April, the Puda stock had been halted by the American Stock Exchange after the company said it will investigate unauthorized transactions in the shares of subsidiary Shanxi Coal by Chairman Ming Zhao, alleged by an website.

Peabody, ArcelorMittal bid $5 bln for Macarthur Coal

Peabody Energy has teamed up with ArcelorMittal to offer $5 billion for Australia's Macarthur Coal , the world's biggest producer of pulverised coal, as demand for steel-making raw materials intensifies. The cash offer of A$15.50 a share represents a 40-percent premium to Monday's close and comes just a day after Australia unveiled a plan to tax carbon emissions from the nation's worst polluters, or about 500 companies, including coal miners.

Chile Codelco seeks to avert 24-hr workers' strike

Chile's Codelco on Monday sought to avert a 24-hour strike by workers demanding a bigger say in the restructuring of the world's top copper miner, the company's top executives said on Monday.

End of Fed’s QE2 portends rocky ride for gold rally

The end of Federal Reserve emergency cash is unlikely to derail gold's 10-year rally, but the precious metal might face a rockier road as the cheap money that had fueled its ascent dries up, at least for now.

Copper hits nearly 2-month high after Greek vote

Jun 29 (Reuters) - Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange hit its highest in nearly two months on Wednesday at $9,280 a tonne as the euro rallied on optimism Greece will be able to avert a default, after its parliament backed an austerity bill.

China pays more in new potash deal with Russia, Belarus

Belarusian Potash Company, the agent for Uralkali and Belaruskali, has sold potash to two Chinese fertiliser importers at prices $70 a tonne higher than in the first half.

Gold Fields in $60m loan deal with Stanbic Ghana

Stanbic Bank, a unit of South Africa's Standard Bank Group, Ghana said on Wednesday it had closed 3-year a $60 million senior revolving loan with Gold Fields' unit in the country.

China’s Jinchuan mulls bid for Metorex

Jinchuan Group Ltd., China's dominant nickel producer, may be the secret bidder for South African miner Metorex , the Business Day reported on Wednesday. Metorex, attractive due to its copper and cobalt operations in Africa, said earlier this month it had received an interest from another unnamed party after an earlier $1.1 billion bid from Brazil’s Vale .

Athabasca Oil Sands' ups reserve estimates; raises capex

Canada's Athabasca Oil Sands Corp said it increased its net resource volume by 10 percent and raised its capital expense to drill more wells.

Australia's Fortescue says would be hit harder by mine tax

"BHP (Billiton) , Rio Tinto and Xstrata were able to avoid most of this tax because they were all in the room when this tax was decided," Andrew Forrest told a news conference.

Goldman, Clive Capital to launch commodities index-FT

Goldman Sachs is to launch a commodities index with Clive Capital, the world's largest commodity hedge fund, the Financial Times reported on Monday citing a source familiar with the product.

Maple Group adds four new partners to TMX bid

Four more financial institutions have joined Maple Group Acquisition Corp's plan to mount a hostile bid for the TMX Group (X.TO: Quote) and top a friendly offer from the London Stock Exchange Group (LSE.L: Quote), the consortium of Canadian banks and pension funds said on Sunday. Desjardins Financial Group, GMP Capital Inc (GMP.TO: Quote), Dundee Capital Markets (DCM.TO: Quote) and Manulife Financial (MFC.TO: Quote) have agreed to join Maple's C$3.6 billion (US$3.7 billion) bid for the operator of Canada's main bourse.