SMM10, March 25-(AlbemarleCorp), the world's largest lithium producer, cut its sales and profit forecasts for this year on Thursday, as its shares fell nearly 7 per cent during the extended trading period, as white metal prices continued to fall.
Demand for lithium, a key component of lithium for mobile phones, electric cars and other consumer goods, is widely expected to surge by 2025.
But in recent months, global trade tensions, shrinking subsidies for electric cars in China and rising production have all put pressure on prices.
The company now expects adjusted earnings per share of between $6.00 and $6.20 this year, compared with its previous forecast of $6.25 to $6.65.
The company also cut its 2019 net sales forecast to $3.7 billion from $3.65 billion and from $3.65 billion to $3.85 billion.
It also reported an initial adjusted third-quarter profit of $1.53 a share, wiping out smelly and catalyst results due to weakness in the lithium division.
On average, analysts expect the company to report adjusted profits of $1.63, according to Refinitiv's IBES data.
Yabo said lithium sales were lower than expected in the quarter, mainly due to the postponement of lithium shipments at the port of Shanghai to October as a result of Typhoon Thapa (Tapah) in late September.
Lithium prices were generally flat in the third quarter, up slightly from a year earlier, with continued price pressure on lithium sales in China, with core earnings of about $5 million.
Luke Kisham (Luke Kissam), CEO, said: "although one-off projects have affected our third quarter results and face a challenging market environment in 2020, we remain confident in lithium's long-term growth prospects.
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