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Nickel rises as virus cases in Indonesia spark supply concern

Business - Nickel prices rose on Monday, rebounding from eight-month lows hit in the previous session on worries over ore supply as top producer Indonesia reported its first coronavirus cases.

President Joko Widodo said on Monday two Indonesians had tested positive for the novel coronavirus after being in contact with an infected Japanese national.

“If the situation gets out of control (in Indonesia) then production of nickel ore and nickel pig iron will decrease,” said a nickel analyst.

Indonesia’s aim to start the benchmark floor price for the material by late March and hopes that global central banks would roll out stimulus measures to cushion the economic fallout from the fast-spreading virus also lent some support.

Three-month nickel on the London Metal Exchange (LME) rose as much as 3.5% to $12,685 a tonne, rebounding from an eight-month low hit on Friday.

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