Aluminum prices slide to 16-month lows on Thursday while other base metals also are falling on the London Metals Exchange, as more dismal factory and property data from China spark more worries about weak demand.
According to Reuters, benchmark aluminum futures (LMAHDS03:COM) on the LME recently traded -2.3% to $2,305/metric ton, and LME tin -6.8% to a 19-month low $21,240/ton after falling as much as 9%; zinc, copper, nickel and lead also are lower.
China's factory activity contracted in August, according to a private survey, while nearly 70 Chinese cities reported declines in new home prices, the most since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A new lockdown of the Chinese metropolis of Chengdu almost adds to concerns over the economy of the world's top metals consuming country.
An expected increase to interest rates next week by the European Central Bank also could be weighing on markets.
Investors were bailing out of some of their bullish positions in energy-intensive metals aluminum and zinc, Saxo Bank's Ole Hansen told Reuters.