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Cobalt (The next Uranium), Discussion
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 22 2019, 10:31 AM
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China Molybdenum says giant Congo copper mine is losing money
Bloomberg News | August 21, 2019
QUOTE
China Molybdenum’s warning to employees comes as Congo’s entire extractive industry is under pressure after a revised mining code was signed into law in March last year, raising taxes and canceling a clause that would have protected producing mines against fiscal changes for another decade. The government then imposed a 10% royalty tax on cobalt producers eight months later.

Glencore Plc said earlier this month that it will shutter its Mutanda project for about two years in a bid to put a floor under the cobalt market, which has seen prices fall more than 70% since April last year.

Cobalt collapse
Those setbacks highlight how quickly cobalt has shifted from a prized asset to a headache. After quadrupling in two years, prices have collapsed to the lowest since 2016 as new supplies pour into the market. The copper price has dropped by about 5% over the past year.

“Despite the adverse environment and difficulties painted above, in order to preserve jobs and keep current benefits, the new management team, with the support of shareholders, has developed a business revitalization and development plan to face the risks,” China Molybdenum’s unit said.

read more - https://www.mining.com/web/china-molybdenum...s-losing-money/



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The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 21 2019, 08:40 PM
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In Reply To: blacksheep's post @ Aug 7 2019, 10:37 AM

Glencore could do for cobalt what it did for zinc – double the price
Frik Els | August 20, 2019
QUOTE
A new report by Capital Economics urges cobalt bulls to be patient, pointing to Glencore’s similar action in 2015 to shore up the zinc market, which lead to a doubling of the price in fewer than three years.

Ross Strachan, senior commodities economist at Capital Economics, predicts a near doubling in the price by end-2021 from the level before the Mutanda care and maintenance news:

We think that this mine closure will eradicate the surplus in the cobalt market and we now forecast the market to be in a small deficit in 2020 and 2021.

Crucially this is underpinned by strong demand due to our expectation of rapid growth in electric vehicle production.

This will offset the increase in supply from the existing pipeline of projects, including Glencore’s Katanga, and a likely upturn in artisanal mining, which had slumped this year in conjunction with the price.

London-based Capital Economics predicts cobalt to reach $40,000 by the end of next year and add another $10,000 by the end of 2021.

However, the independent research company cautions that the price is unlikely to return to its 2018 peaks, as Glencore would return to the market before then.

https://www.mining.com/glencore-could-do-fo...uble-the-price/

China’s skepticism of Mutanda closure characteristic of short-term procurement strategy
QUOTE
Cobalt prices have risen by more than 25% since Glencore announced it would close its Mutanda mine and in doing so bring forward expectations of a shortfall in cobalt supply.

But with other projects ramping up or in the pipeline, stockpiles to be worked through, and a short-term approach to raw materials procurement, Chinese battery-related buyers are skeptical they will be affected by tightness in the near term.

QUOTE
Restocking ahead of late 2020 momentum
With the short-term approach to procurement, focus on ramping up supply that still leaves the cobalt market in a surplus next year, and relative flexibility around battery chemistries and associated cobalt demand, Chinese buyers are confident they won’t face a shortage in the near term.

But a deficit is on the cards longer term. According to Fastmarkets’ research analysts, cobalt demand from the EV sector will reach 75,000 tonnes in 2025, up from 9,500 tonnes in 2017.

In the fall-out from the Mutanda announcement, market participants outside China are looking at their longer-term strategy again.

“A lot of the downstream [buyers] are incorrectly skeptical,” the first trading source said. “The news just told me to get longer, sooner.”

Furthermore, some market participants told Fastmarkets the optimism, and recent price increases, is underpinned by the outlook for better demand from the battery sector in the fourth quarter, which had already been translated into rebounding cobalt metal prices and hydroxide payables even ahead of the announcement.

“We see a possible knee-jerk reaction up to $18 sometime in August and September, but then consolidation before the price picks up again in the second to fourth quarters in 2020,” Adams said, with sustainable price momentum materializing from late next year.

“We see the refined market remaining in a surplus next year, but the stock drawdown will be very constructive and that should support prices later next year and then meaningfully in 2021,” Adams added.

The benchmark standard grade cobalt price will average $16-16.50 per lb in the fourth quarter and first half of 2020, rising to $18-19 in the second half of next year, according to forecasts from Fastmarkets’ research team.

“One cut can make all the difference but stocks need to be drawn down first,” Adams said.

https://www.metalbulletin.com/Article/38898...t-strategy.html



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The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 17 2019, 04:09 PM
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In Reply To: blacksheep's post @ Aug 7 2019, 10:37 AM

China’s Huayou pulls out of Congo cobalt mine investment after price slump
Reuters | August 16, 2019 | 9:23 am
QUOTE
China’s biggest cobalt refiner Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt said on Thursday its overseas unit is pulling out a deal to invest $66.3 million in a cobalt mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) after prices of the metal slid.

Huayou International Mining had agreed to take a 51% stake in Lucky Resources Holdings Co Ltd, whose wholly owned subsidiary New Minerals Investment holds the DRC’s 13235 mining licence, in December 2017.

“After signing, the market environment has undergone quite a big change,” Huayou said in a filing to the Shanghai Stock Exchange. “The price of cobalt products has fallen sharply and profitability has dropped sharply.”

THE COMPANY HAD SO FAR PAID ONLY $9.95 MILLION OF THE AGREED PRICE, HALF OF WHICH WILL BE RETURNED BY SEPTEMBER 2020

Prices of cobalt, a key ingredient in batteries for electric vehicles, have fallen by around two-thirds from their April 2018 peak of near $100,000 a tonne, and currently stand at $32,600 a tonne on the London Metal Exchange.

They have however shot up more than 25% this month, driven largely by Glencore’s confirmation on Aug. 7 that it was shutting its Mutanda copper and cobalt mine, also in DRC, the world’s biggest cobalt producer, for two years.

“After friendly consultation with the other party, the two sides agreed to terminate this outward investment cooperation,” Huayou said.

The company had so far paid only $9.95 million of the agreed price, half of which will be returned by September 2020 and the remainder by June 2021, according to the filing.

Huayou, primarily a cobalt refiner that makes chemical products such as cobalt hydroxide and cobalt sulphate, operates the PE527 copper-cobalt mining permit in the DRC.

(Reporting by Tom Daly and Yilei Sun; Editing by Jan Harvey)


https://www.mining.com/web/chinas-huayou-pu...er-price-slump/







--------------------
The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 12 2019, 08:17 PM
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Cobalt to share EV battery duties with nickel
QUOTE
At Ahead of the Herd we believe both cobalt and nickel sulphide will share the EV battery limelight. However, because of the scarcity of nickel sulphide deposits the junior resource company that already owns, and can develop a nickel sulfide deposit at tidewater, with enough scale to actually become a mine, will have major base metal mining companies like BHP, Vale, Glencore and Sherritt pounding on its door.

read full article -> https://www.aheadoftheherd.com/Newsletter/2...with-nickel.htm



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The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 8 2019, 12:44 PM
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In Reply To: blacksheep's post @ Aug 7 2019, 10:37 AM

Miners find out the hard way why cobalt is called the goblin
Bloomberg News | August 7, 2019

QUOTE
For Glencore, the precipitous fall in cobalt is more bruising because the metal, a key ingredient for batteries, was its shining star back in 2017. The miner made its copper and cobalt assets a big part of its selling pitch to investors, touting the future boom in electric cars and global urbanization.

But the strategy hit pitfalls. Excess supply has overwhelmed demand for battery materials and because it’s a niche market, Glencore hasn’t been able to hedge its exposure to cobalt, leaving the metals trading business exposed to losses. To make matters worse, Glencore detected uranium in some cobalt last year, rendering it unsaleable.

To be sure, Glencore isn’t giving up on Mutanda entirely. It expects to bring it back online in 2021 and is looking at a new mine plan that could boost production over the long term. The restart might coincide with electric cars becoming more popular with consumers, which would boost demand.

That could leave Glencore’s traders on a strong footing as they negotiate supply deals with customers who pulled out of contracts when prices were weak. “People who have reneged on us in the past, of course they’re not going to be top of our list,” Glasenberg said.


read more - https://www.mining.com/web/miners-find-out-...led-the-goblin/



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The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 7 2019, 11:48 AM
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In Reply To: nipper's post @ Aug 7 2019, 11:04 AM

Yep - just like the much hyped graphite boom, the lithium boom the cobalt boom has has blown up - for the time being. All those who rushed and made it into production are struggling. Down the spec end, the ones still kicking around rock chips, the promoters are exiting into the next hot thing biggrin.gif

Moral to the story - in any boom get in early (on the "pie in the sky" hype) then get out fast (when reality bites).

Not to say we won't see another boom in battery materials - but not just yet IMHO



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The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 


nipper
post Posted: Aug 7 2019, 11:04 AM
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In Reply To: blacksheep's post @ Aug 7 2019, 10:37 AM

Wow, just as well I only kept a Watchlist.....
.. - and might even delete that (although sometimes , now is the best time to buy)



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"Every long-term security is nothing more than a claim on some expected future stream of cash that will be delivered into the hands of investors over time. For a given stream of expected future cash payments, the higher the price investors pay today for that stream of cash, the lower the long-term return they will achieve on their investment over time." - Dr John Hussman

"If I had even the slightest grasp upon my own faculties, I would not make essays, I would make decisions." ― Michel de Montaigne
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Aug 7 2019, 10:37 AM
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In Reply To: blacksheep's post @ Jul 21 2019, 11:33 AM

Another cobalt mine shuttered - and not just any old cobalt mine. Cobalt prices have fallen more than 40% this year due to a surge of supply - mainly from DRC
Glencore to shutter giant cobalt and copper mine in Congo
Bloomberg News | August 6, 2019
QUOTE
Glencore Plc is planning to halt production at one of the world’s biggest cobalt mines after prices for the battery metal collapsed and costs at the project increased, according to a person familiar with the situation.

The announcement that Glencore will close its Mutanda mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo is expected to come as the company lays out an overhaul of its key African copper and cobalt business when it releases first-half results on Wednesday. It would be another setback for Glencore, which has been dogged by operational problems, legal challenges and a rift with Congo’s government over a new mining code.


QUOTE
Even though African copper and cobalt is a small part of Glencore’s overall business, it’s considered a key source of future profits. The company ranks as the world’s top producer of cobalt and investors have hoped Glencore would ride the boom in electric cars and battery demand. Mutanda produced 27,300 tons of cobalt last year, more than half Glencore’s total output, and 199,000 tons of copper.

The decision to shutter the mine highlights how quickly cobalt has shifted from a prized asset to a headache. After quadrupling in two years, prices have collapsed to the lowest since 2016 as new supplies pour into the market.

With few hedging tools available, the plunge has left Glencore exposed. The company said last week that it’ll report a $350 million non-cash hit to its trading business from cobalt that’s been mined, but not yet sold.


https://www.mining.com/web/glencore-plans-t...-mine-in-congo/



--------------------
The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Jul 21 2019, 11:33 AM
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Eurasian Resources is said to weigh sale of Congo mining assets
Bloomberg News | July 19, 2019

QUOTE
ERG, which mines copper and cobalt in DRC, has been reviewing its investments and has already sold assets valued at about $1 billion, according to its website. The company is a major producer of cobalt, a material used in rechargeable batteries powering iPhones and Tesla cars, though it’s had to grapple with a supply glut and declining prices. Congo produced 72% of the world’s supply of cobalt last year.


read more - https://www.mining.com/web/eurasian-resourc...-mining-assets/



--------------------
The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
blacksheep
post Posted: Jul 11 2019, 03:09 PM
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Surge in battery nickel use is more bad news for cobalt price
Frik Els | July 10, 2019

QUOTE
Battery metals tracker Adamas Intelligence says electric vehicle manufacturers deployed 57% more nickel in passenger EV batteries in May this year compared to 2018.

The Toronto-based research company, which tracks EV registrations and battery chemistries in more than 80 countries says the nickel metal equivalent used in lithium-ion batteries (primarily in the form of nickel sulphate) increased by 69% whereas the amount used in nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries (primarily in the form of nickel hydroxide and AB5 nickel-REE alloy) increased 26%.

THE DEPLOYMENT OF NICKEL IS OUTPACING THE GROWTH OF THE OVERALL EV BATTERY MARKET

The deployment of nickel also outpaced the growth of the EV market overall. In May this year, total passenger EV battery capacity deployed globally was 48% higher year-on-year according to Adamas data.

Nickel’s inroads is due to shifting chemistries of nickel-cobalt-manganese (NCM) battery cathodes.


QUOTE
Nickel touched $13,000 a tonne for the first time since April on Wednesday. The price is up just over 19% in 2019 as the EV boom creates additional demand and primary use of the metal today – stainless steel production – continues to grow.

Cobalt is now worth $28,000 a tonne after peaking at $95,000 little more than a year ago as miners in the Congo – responsible for two-thirds of output – ramp up production.

https://www.mining.com/surge-in-battery-nic...r-cobalt-price/



--------------------
The herd instinct among forecasters makes sheep look like independent thinkers. Edgar Fiedler

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. George Washington
 
 


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