February 2021

NEW ENERGY MATERIALS MARKET REPORT 26/02: Chinese spodumene price surges on tight China supply

An overview of the new energy materials markets and their price moves from the past week.

GLOBAL LITHIUM WRAP: China’s producers target higher prices in March; Asian seaborne price rise continues

Chinese domestic lithium prices continued to rise in the week to Thursday February 25, supported by continued tight spot supply, and most producers are targeting even higher prices in March.

Strong downstream market, tight availability boost cobalt hydroxide price

The spot cobalt hydroxide payable edged higher in the first half of the week with consumers holding robust demand amid persistent spot tight availability of the feedstock, sources said on February 25.

Production cuts, disconnect from salts prices bolster cobalt metal price in China

The Chinese domestic price of cobalt metal surged in the first half of this week amid tightened supply and robust demand from the battery supply chain.

GLOBAL NICKEL WRAP: US cut cathode premium drops, others steady; China’s sulfate price continues climb

Premiums for nickel plate and briquette in China were flat in the week to Tuesday February 23 amid a lack of spot activity, but the nickel sulfate price in the country rose to a fresh all-time high, with a robust domestic electric vehicle (EV) market providing support.

Chile’s Corfo files international arbitrage lawsuit against lithium producer Albemarle

Chile’s Corfo on Friday February 19 filed an arbitration process with the International Chamber of Commerce against United States-based lithium miner Albemarle for allegedly underpaying royalties on its lithium sales, Corfo confirmed to Fastmarkets on Monday February 22.

Albemarle brings in flexible lithium contracts to aid price recovery

New structures to lithium contracts will provide more flexibility to raise prices in response to improving market conditions, United States-based lithium producer Albemarle said during an earnings call on Thursday February 18.

GLOBAL LITHIUM WRAP: Tightness pushes China’s carbonate price higher; Asian hydroxide makes first move in five months

China’s domestic lithium carbonate price increased by 4.4% over the week to Thursday February 18 supported by tight supply in the spot market, while the Asian seaborne lithium hydroxide market moved up for the first time in five months influenced by China’s price upturn.

Cobalt metal trades at parity again; Chinese buyers still inactive

The price of alloy-grade cobalt metal remained steady day-on-day on Thursday February 18, while the price of standard-grade cobalt moved higher, drawing the two price assessments back into parity, amid thin trading and with Chinese buyers still absent from the market.

AT A GLANCE: Lithium producer Albemarle expects higher sales in 2021

A summary of United States-based lithium producer Albemarle’s results for the fourth quarter of 2020, as stated in a quarterly report published on Wednesday February 17.