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Copper Mine Woes Mean Hope for Bulls as Citi Splits With Goldman

  • Market to swing into supply deficit in 2016, Citigroup says
  • Mine disruptions, producer cutbacks adding to constraints
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Copper bulls that were battered by slowing Chinese demand have reason for hope as Citigroup Inc. predicts mine disruptions will send the oversupplied market back into deficit next year.

More than 1.5 million metric tons of planned output this year has been lost for reasons ranging from rains and riots in Chile to lack of precipitation in Zambia and Papua New Guinea, Citigroup analysts including David Wilson said in a report Tuesday. Total mine output this year will be 18.9 million tons, with production exceeding demand by 61,000 tons, according to the bank, which predicts a deficit in 2016. The forecasts contrasts with other analysts including Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which projects surpluses through 2019.