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Copper market hit hard by virus

Mar 19, 2020

Production halted at several copper mining operations in face of COVID19.

The price of copper dipped again Wednesday as global commodities markets try to cope with the economic impact of the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

Copper trading in New York fell by almost 9% to $2.111 a pound ($4,650 a tonne), the weakest level since October 2016. Copper is now down more than 25% from its 2020 high near the end of January.

Argentina, Peru and Chile where the world’s biggest copper deposits are found have closed borders or imposed restrictions to contain the outbreak on the continent.

Copper mining stocks declined sharply, led by top US producer Freeport-McMoRan which fell by nearly 25% before attracting some buying towards the end of the day. The Phoenix, Arizona-based company said it’s suspending operations at its Cerro Verde mine in Peru for at least 15 days.

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