Anson Resources shareholders rushed for the exit on Tuesday after the explorer reported lower-than-expected lithium levels at its flagship project in Utah’s Paradox Basin.

The shares closed down 49 per cent at 5.9c.

More than 85 million shares changed hands — about 23 per cent of its shares — forcing the price down to an intra-day low of 5.6c just after midday.

“Lithium concentrations are well below historical assay (test) results in other parts of the Paradox Basin,” Anson (ASX:ASN) told investors.

“The reasons for the low lithium results are still being determined.

“However, it is also possible that the lithium does not flow from the area around Long Canyon due to cross-cutting structures which may be forming lithium traps, concentrating the lithium in those areas.”

Anson previously labelled the Paradox Basin as “The New Lithium Province”, with multiple exploration companies active in the “Four Corners” area.

Historical assays from wells in the area have shown the presence of lithium values of 173-1700 parts per million (ppm).

But Anson’s Gold Bar Unit 2 well returned assays of just 9-27 ppm.

By the closing bell, shares had recovered marginally to 5.9c – still an over 80 per cent drop on the 52-week high of 31c that Anson shares were trading at in mid-January.

ASN shares over the past year.
ASN shares over the past year.

Anson has now started the second stage of its exploration program at the Cane Creek 32-1 well, which lies 5km to the south of Gold Bar Unit 2.

The company says it is focusing future exploration activities in the southern part of the project where higher lithium values have previously been recorded.

Stockhead could not reach Anson for comment.