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Lithium Upstream Materials Analysis: Cobalt Prices Continue to Rise Views [0] Published: 2018-03-10 11:05:09


Recently, cobalt prices have continued to rise, promoting the post-holiday cobalt product prices to rise sharply, and cathode material manufacturers have resumed production. The two sides are still exploring each other and the actual transactions are more sporadic. It is expected that large-volume transactions will occur in mid-March.

In terms of lithium, lithium salt suppliers actively pushed up prices, and the prices of first-tier suppliers kept steady. The production of cathode material manufacturers gradually resumed and it is expected that there will be large volume transactions.


Electrolytic Cobalt: Guided by the acceleration of foreign media's cobalt price, the domestic manufacturers, speculators and importers have made significant price increases after the Festival. The overall market transaction is still under pressure, but individual companies just need to lock down transactions to maintain production, and the cost keeps rising. With the help of the downstream, it seems that the stability of cobalt prices is very rare at present. The current price of electrolytic cobalt is 595,000-608,000 yuan per ton, and the average price is up 24,000 yuan per ton.


Cobalt salt and nickel salt: During the Spring Festival, foreign media cobalt prices are still rising. Most of the smelter products have been locked by the ternary precursor manufacturers before the holiday. Currently, the large number of available spot for sale is relatively rare, and the payment terms are more stringent. The price of cobalt sulfate in Zhejiang increased to 135 yuan/kg, and that of cobalt chloride rose to 155 yuan/kg. For the transaction, cobalt sulfate has been sold for more than RMB 130/kg, and the transaction price of cobalt chloride has gone up to RMB 150/kg.


Nickel, raw materials for nickel also continued to rise, nickel sulfate in Guangxi offer rose to 2.75 yuan / ton. The current price of cobalt chloride is 148-150 yuan/kg, and the average price is 8 yuan/kg higher than last week. The price of cobalt sulfate was 128-132 yuan/kg, and the average price was 9 yuan/kg higher than last week. Nickel sulphate price is 27,500 yuan / ton -29,500 yuan / ton, average price rose by 10,000 yuan / ton last week.


Cobalt tetroxide: The prices of the mainstream four-cobalt manufacturers are mostly maintained at 460-475 yuan/kg before the holiday, and the transaction price before the holiday is at the peak of 430 yuan/kg, which has exceeded 450 yuan/kg. However, due to the fact that some of the lithium cobaltate manufacturers had agreed on strategic stocks before the holiday, the trading volume was small. The current price of cobalt tetroxide is 441-451 yuan/kg, and the average price is 21 yuan/kg higher than last week.


Cobalt oxide: The price of mainstream cobalt oxide market suppliers rose to 430 yuan/kg or more. The cobalt oxide market is dominated by sellers and the actual transaction price rises passively. Rare earth permanent magnet industry sources said that cobalt oxide prices rose too fast, or will accelerate the market for the use of cobalt oxide substitute NdFeB. The current price of cobalt oxide is 404-414 yuan/kg, and the average price is 19 yuan/kg higher than last week.


Cobalt powder: The mainstream price of cobalt powder continued to rise. The price quoted by major manufacturers rose to 720 yuan/kg, and the downstream market was passively accepted. The transaction price this week exceeded 680 yuan/kg. The price of cobalt powder was 675-685 yuan/kg, and the average price was 35 yuan/kg higher than last week.


Ternary precursors: Precursor suppliers feared that cobalt salts continued to rise, and prices of cobalt sulphate drove up prices to test the acceptance of downstream ternary material manufacturers. The price of the triple precursor in Hunan increased to 142 yuan/kg or more. The suppliers in Zhejiang and Jilin regions either suspended their quotation or adjusted it to 140 yuan/kg. However, it takes some time for the cost of nickel-cobalt raw materials to increase. The transaction price of the 523-type ternary precursors this week went up to 138 yuan/kg. The price of the ternary precursor (523 type) was 134-138 yuan/kg, and the average price rose by 6 yuan/kg from last week.


Lithium carbonate: The price of lithium carbonate is stable. After the holiday, a factory in Sichuan had a large report price of 160,000 yuan per ton or more, and a factory in Shandong responded with an increase in price. It is understood that there has been no change in the quotation of giant giant suppliers in Jiangxi and Sichuan. Lithium carbonate suppliers are actively creating signals for price increase, and manufacturers of cathode materials are mostly wait-and-see. The price of lithium carbonate was 150,000-157,000 yuan/ton, and the average price was unchanged from last week.


Lithium cobaltate: The driving force for the increase in the price of lithium cobaltate lies in the gradual conduction of the quotation of cobalt. Despite the off-season of digital electronics, cobalt-based raw materials continued to rise and lithium cobalt-battery battery manufacturers were passively accepted. The price of 4.35V lithium cobaltate was 433-443 yuan/kg, and the average price was 13 yuan/kg higher than last week.


Ternary materials: Cobalt raw materials continue to rise after the holiday, mainstream ternary material suppliers this week


Delivery of pre-orders was still underway, and the quotation was not raised yet. Some manufacturers raised the quotation, but said that the current price of the 523 model was difficult to break through 220 yuan/kg. The price of ternary material (523 type) was 215-217 yuan/kg, and the average price was 5 yuan/kg higher than last week.


Lithium iron phosphate: After the Spring Festival, the mainstream price of lithium iron phosphate (power type) remained at 80-90 yuan/kg, which was unchanged from the previous year. Starting from March, various lithium iron phosphate manufacturers started to gradually resume production from the suspension of production during the Spring Festival. The price of lithium iron phosphate was 80-90 yuan/kg, and the average price was unchanged from last week.


Market Forecast: It is predicted that the cobalt price will remain high for a while. The core logic lies in that from the fundamentals, there is no gap in supply and demand of cobalt salts, and the excessive increase in cobalt prices will push the cathode material industry to reshuffle, and it will also inhibit the blind expansion of positive electrode material production capacity. The actual effective demand will be More prominent. In addition, the overseas cobalt investment company Cobalt 27, after having mastered nearly 3,000 tons of physical cobalt, stated that it will focus its future investment on the cobalt mines that will be put into operation instead of continuing to hoard electrocobalt, suggesting that the move implies a period of time. The speculation of speculation by domestic market authorities has reduced the risk of driving the price of cobalt.