They must have found a way for their workers to live on fewer calories…

Copper Miners’ Pain Doesn’t Stop Buildup

Nov 23 (WSJ) —Global copper production is on track to hit an all-time high of 18.7 million metric tons this year, according to BMO Capital Markets. The cost of producing a pound of copper at Freeport’s Grasberg mine in Indonesia will drop to 61 cents next year, from an estimated $1.05 cents in 2015, according to BMO. Next year, four new mines will increase the world’s copper production by 5.1%, says Barclays. This year, rains, drought, earthquakes and labor strikes cut 9% from planned global mine output, versus typical annual losses of 4% to 5%, said Citigroup.

Capital Expenditure is one of the channels whereby agents spend more than their incomes which offsets those spending less than their incomes:

Japan Inc. tightens purse strings at home

Nov 24 (Nikkei) — Capital spending in Japan shrank an annualized 4.8% from the previous quarter in the April-June period and fell an annualized 5% in the three months ended in September. Aggregate pretax profit of listed companies in Japan is seen climbing to a record for the second consecutive year in fiscal 2015. Japanese companies M&A spending overseas topped 10 trillion yen ($80.6 billion) for the first time this year, according to M&A advisory Recof. R&D spending will be included in GDP data from the end of next year, but at this point, its omission makes corporate spending look even smaller than the reality.

The progressive response is to eliminate all corporate taxes, as they merely get passed through to consumers. But don’t count on either side picking up on that. Or that in no case should health care be a marginal cost of production, unless the work itself causes health problems, etc. etc. etc.