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METALS-LME copper flat; shrugs off looming Indonesia export resumption

SYDNEY, July 24 (Reuters) - London copper was little changed on Thursday, shrugging of news that miners in Indonesia may soon resume ore exports that have been halted since January, while traders awaited a string of flash manufacturing sector reports.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was down 0.1 percent at $7,039.50 a tonne by 0042 GMT, after closing little changed in previous session.

* The most-traded Shanghai copper contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange edged up 0.2 percent to 49,980 yuan ($8,100) a tonne in overnight trade.

* Freeport-McMoRan Inc said on Wednesday it expects to "imminently" sign an agreement with Indonesia that would enable it to immediately resume copper concentrate exports which have been halted for more than six months. 1/8ID;nL2N0PY0PX 3/8

* World No. 1 copper producer Codelco has admitted for the first time that its newest mine is behind schedule because of problems with its roaster, which sources said have forced it to cancel sales and buy raw material on the spot market.

* Wages may be growing at a faster clip than envisaged by U.S. policymakers, with a recent raft of business surveys showing an increase in the number of companies raising compensation.

* The International Monetary Fund on Wednesday said it expects the U.S. economy to grow 1.7 percent in 2014, even more slowly than it predicted a month ago, as weakness in the first quarter offsets an expected pick-up in the second half of the year.

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MARKETS NEWS

* Asian stocks inched higher on Thursday, encouraged by upbeat corporate results and a record close on Wall Street, while unrest in the Middle East and Ukraine underpinned demand for high-rated bonds.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0130 China HSBC Mfg PMI Flash Jul CNPMIF=ECI

1230 U.S. Initial jobless claims Weekly USJOB=ECI

1345 U.S. Markit mfg PMI Flash Jul USMPMP=ECI

1530 U.S. Nat gas-EIA, change bcf Weekly USOILN=ECI

PRICES

Three month LME copper

Most active ShFE copper

Three month LME aluminium

Most active ShFE aluminium

Three month LME zinc

Most active ShFE zinc

Three month LME lead

Most active ShFE lead

Three month LME nickel

Three month LME tin

($1 = 6.1982 Chinese Yuan)

(Reporting by Melanie Burton; Editing by Michael Perry)