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Bearish sentiment to expand downside room in lithium salt prices

iconJun 13, 2019 19:01
Overseas prices of cobalt continued to dip as of Jun 13, in line with SMM expectations

SHANGHAI, Jun 13 (SMM) – Prices of lithium hydroxide will continue to see downside room as market participants remain bearish about prices. 

SMM learned that trades of battery-grade lithium hydroxide (coarse particle) mostly occurred below 85,000 yuan/mt as of Thursday June 13. 

As of June 13, the prices of battery-grade lithium carbonate shrank an average 1,000 yuan/mt from May 30, to stand at 75,000-78,000 yuan/mt, SMM assessed. Prices of industrial-grade lithium carbonate held stable at 66,000-70,000 yuan/mt, amid downbeat market sentiment. 

Overseas prices of cobalt continued to dip as of Thursday June 13, in line with SMM expectations. This is in line with SMM's outlook that domestic premiums of refined cobalt over cobalt sulphate will decrease and the cobalt price spread between foreign and domestic markets will narrow in the short term. 

China's new-energy vehicles (NEVs) sector continued to expand in May but with slower year-on-year growth, showed data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM). 

NEV sales in May climbed 1.8% from a year ago, compared with a buildup of 18.1% in April, according to CAAM data.

SMM data showed that installed capacity of power batteries stood at 5.68GWh in May, with ternary batteries accounting for 66.1% and lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries for 30.5%. 

Ganzizhou Rongda Lithium commenced mining at Asia's largest solid spodumene deposit in Ganzi area of Sichuan on Monday June 10, local media reported. 

With an investment of 16 billion yuan, the Gyabjeka spodumene project is expected to generate 30,000 mt of spodumene concentrate this year. Annualised capacity is designed at 70,000-80,000 mt. 

Market commentary

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