SHANGHAI, Dec 29 (SMM) – Prices of lithium metals fell to 790,000-820,000 yuan/mt as of Friday December 28, down 20,000 yuan/mt from a week ago, SMM assessments showed.
Earlier in the month, prices of lithium metals held stable at 810,000-840,000 yuan/mt.
Environmental probes prompted many pharmaceutical companies in coastal regions, like Jiangsu and Zhejiang to shut for rectification. This eroded demand for lithium metals.
In China, the pharmaceutical intermediate sector is a major downstream consumer of lithium metals.
We expect rectifications to continue into the first quarter of 2019. Mills are estimated to resume operation at the end of the first quarter.
Dips in prices of lithium chloride, triggered by weakening lithium hydroxide prices, also accounted for recent declines in prices of lithium metals. Lithium chloride, used to produce lithium metal, mostly traded at 80,000-90,000 yuan/mt as of December 29.