Each week our High Voltage column wraps all the news driving ASX battery metals stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, manganese and vanadium.

Scroll down for a table showing the recent performance of 200 ASX battery metal stocks >>

INDUSTRY FOCUS

Carmakers are teaming up

Competing carmakers continue to collaborate on electric vehicle development during its painful transition from niche to mainstream.

These partnerships are just a more efficient way to keep costs down during this disruptive (and very pricey) shift.

The latest collab involves Germany’s Volkswagen Group – which owns Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Porsche, SEAT, Škoda and Volkswagen – and US-based Ford, which will develop commercial vans and medium-sized pickups for global markets from 2022.

Volkswagen and Ford may also collaborate on autonomous vehicles, mobility services and EVs and “have started to explore opportunities” already, Volkswagen told investors.

“Frenemies?”

In December, Bloomberg reported that German carmakers Daimler and BMW were also looking at collaborating on key car components, a move that reflected “the fundamental changes sweeping the industry”.

And Toyota could be launching a joint venture in 2020 with battery maker Panasonic, which could also provide batteries to Toyota’s EV technology partners Mazda and Subaru.

 Now a collab of a different sort…

Ford also wants to prove to its customers that it only uses ethical cobalt in its EVs.

The American carmaker is partnering with Huayou Cobalt, IBM, LG Chem and RCS Global on the development of an open, industry-wide blockchain platform that will start with tracking cobalt but could eventually be used to trace and validate other minerals as well.

Basically, the partnership has each major stage of the supply chain covered, from mine to end-user, according to Ford.

Cobalt is in high demand for its use in lithium-ion batteries. The typical electric vehicle (EV) battery requires up to 9kg of cobalt and even a standard laptop requires around 30g of the mineral.

But the origin of cobalt has become a major consumer issue because of the use of child labour in some countries like the Congo, which supplies around 60 per cent of the world’s cobalt.

Nickel oversupply? Probably not

The nickel price over the past 12 months.
The nickel price over the past 12 months.

Analysts have reiterated that fears of bargain-basement battery grade nickel flooding the market starting in 2019 are unsubstantiated.

In September last year a Chinese consortium announced a new $700 million High-Pressure-Acid-Leaching (HPAL) plant in Indonesia, which would produce 50,000 tonnes a year of battery-grade nickel chemicals starting in 2019.

Two similar projects in Indonesia were announced around the same time, and collectively, helped send nickel prices to seven month lows.

Based on previous HPAL project development, this is both faster and cheaper than anyone thought possible.

But Andrew Mitchell, principal nickel analyst at Wood Mackenzie says the amount of nickel coming to the market from these projects will be smaller, slower and more costly “than so far alluded to”.

Mr Mitchell says the nickel market is still looking at another supply deficit for this year, and next year.

Check out this graph:

kitco nickel stocks

Reuters reports that official LME nickel inventories fell 44 per cent in 2018, and just recently fell through the 200,000-tonne mark for the first time since 2013.

This often means more nickel is being consumed than produced.

And if these 2019 HPAL construction milestones are not met, collective market relief could result in a nickel price recovery.

“But if it is shown that the Chinese can’t do it much better that it has been done before, then there will be a collective sigh of relief and perhaps the sentiment will change,” Mr Mitchell says.

SMALL CAP SPOTLIGHT

Of the companies on our list, about 63 lost ground, 66 were ahead and 60 were steady.

European Metals (ASX:EMH) got an unsolicited bid for its Cinovec lithium project near Prague, and even though important stuff – like price – wasn’t disclosed, its share price still jumped about 34 per cent.

Near-term battery metals hopeful Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ) had a strong week, up almost 30 per cent at one point to continue its strong start to 2019.

On Monday, the explorer told investors it had uncovered an “astounding” 3.4 per cent cobalt at its Sconi project.

 

In general, grades of over 1 per cent cobalt are considered high.

“We believe the deposits at Sconi have a lot more to give in terms of resources, which is clearly reflected in the almost three-and-a-half per cent record cobalt hit returned in these results,” managing director Benjamin Bell said.

Australian Mines, which is also trying to finalise project funding, expects to deliver the updated resource before April.

Other big winners this week included Six Sigma Metals (ASX:SI6) up 25 per cent to 1c, Black Rock Mining (ASX:BKT) up 25 per cent to 5c, and Technology Metals  (ASX:TMT) up 16 per cent to 35c.

Here’s a table of ASX battery metal stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, manganese and vanadium>>>

Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort. Best viewed on a laptop

 

Ticker Name One Week Price Change % One Year Price Change % Price [Mon 21 Intraday] Market Cap
CGM COUGAR METALS 50 -72.73 0.003 2.9M
TKM TREK METALS 50 -73.53 0.01 2.8M
EMH EUROPEAN METALS 33.87 -37.12 0.42 60.9M
MLS METALS AUSTRALIA 33.33 -50 0.004 9.4M
AUZ AUSTRALIAN MINES 29.41 -66.15 0.05 124.2M
TON TRITON MINERALS 25.64 -51 0.05 45.4M
BSM BASS METALS 25 -11.76 0.02 41.4M
CZN CORAZON MINING 25 -72.22 0.01 6.3M
PMY PACIFICO MINERALS 25 -44.44 0.01 8.2M
SI6 SIX SIGMA METALS 25 -66.67 0.01 2.3M
BKT BLACK ROCK MINING 24.32 -36.11 0.05 24.8M
RLC REEDY LAGOON 20 -90.48 0.01 2.4M
ORN ORION MINERALS 19.05 -19.35 0.03 46.8M
TMT TECHNOLOGY METALS AUSTRALIA 16.67 16.67 0.35 24.5M
JRV JERVOIS MINING 16 -50.43 0.28 64.7M
AMD ARROW MINERALS 14.29 -60.98 0.02 5.0M
HMX HAMMER METALS 14.29 -51.02 0.02 6.7M
KDR KIDMAN RESOURCES 13.95 -39.36 1.18 495.9M
CLQ CLEAN TEQ 13.1 -68.12 0.46 354.5M
ARE ARGONAUT RESOURCES 12.5 -12.9 0.03 42.0M
CDT CASTLE MINERALS 12.5 -66.67 0.01 2.0M
TNO TANDO RESOURCES 11.7 76.4 0.1 20.3M
ENT ENTERPRISE METAL 11.11 -52.38 0.01 3.9M
CUL CULLEN RESOURCES 10.53 -59.57 0.02 3.6M
MNS MAGNIS ENERGY TECH 10.34 -22.89 0.34 195.6M
SYR SYRAH RESOURCES 10.06 -55.73 1.94 676.9M
VRC VOLT RESOURCES 10 -35.29 0.03 32.0M
VMS VENTURE MINERALS 9.52 -48.89 0.02 12.0M
MRR MINREX RESOURCES 9.09 -76 0.02 2.3M
AVL AUSTRALIAN VANADIUM 8.33 -44.68 0.03 51.3M
MEI METEORIC RESOURCES 8.33 -79.69 0.01 7.5M
THX THUNDELARRA 8.33 -59.38 0.01 8.4M
LKE LAKE RESOURCES 7.94 -71.67 0.07 24.9M
CXO CORE LITHIUM 7.69 -27.27 0.06 38.9M
PGM PLATINA RESOURCES 7.69 -53.33 0.08 18.5M
AOU AUROCH MINERALS 7.14 -25 0.08 7.5M
ANW AUS TIN MINING 7.14 15.38 0.02 29.8M
MCT METALICITY 7.14 -70.59 0.01 9.0M
INF INFINITY LITHIUM 6.78 -60.62 0.06 12.0M
ESR ESTRELLA RESOURCES 6.67 -33.33 0.02 7.9M
KSN KINGSTON RESOURCES 6.25 -32 0.02 20.8M
LPD LEPIDICO 6.25 -75 0.02 57.1M
VML VITAL METALS 6.25 -22.73 0.01 14.8M
E25 ELEMENT 25 6.06 -22.22 0.19 14.7M
VXR VENTUREX RESOURCES 6.06 -44.44 0.17 45.2M
ORE OROCOBRE 5.59 -52.38 3.42 889.2M
AEE AURA ENERGY 5.56 -34.48 0.02 20.7M
OMH OM HLDGS 5.1 29.91 1.35 989.8M
DGR DGR GLOBAL 4.35 14.29 0.12 73.6M
DEG DE GREY MINING 4.17 -21.87 0.12 52.9M
K KIBARAN RESOURCES 3.85 -15.62 0.13 37.2M
IDA INDIANA RESOURCES 3.7 -19.03 0.06 5.4M
PAN PANORAMIC RESOURCES 3.41 17.03 0.47 225.0M
BGS BIRIMIAN 2.94 -76.51 0.17 46.0M
AXE ARCHER EXPLORATION 2.78 -43.08 0.08 14.2M
BAR BARRA RESOURCES 2.56 -28.57 0.04 21.6M
SRK STRIKE RESOURCES 2.22 -41.03 0.05 6.7M
JMS JUPITER MINES 2.04 255.41 0.25 489.7M
ARL ARDEA RESOURCES 1.82 -65.85 0.55 58.8M
RIO RIO TINTO 1.57 10.03 80.38 119.8B
SVM SOVEREIGN METALS 1.45 -51.72 0.07 19.4M
N27 NORTHERN COBALT 1.43 -86.73 0.07 3.6M
MIN MINERAL RESOURCES 1.01 -17.3 16.05 3.0B
PLS PILBARA MINERALS 0.71 -29.35 0.71 1.2B
GXY GALAXY RESOURCES 0.45 -40.79 2.24 916.9M
S32 SOUTH32 0.29 -6.01 3.4 17.2B
AML AEON METALS 0 -7.02 0.27 155.7M
AYR ALLOY RESOURCES 0 -50 0.003 4.7M
AZI ALTA ZINC 0 -45.45 0.01 8.2M
AJM ALTURA MINING 0 -62.07 0.17 300.4M
ADN ANDROMEDA METALS 0 -12.5 0.01 7.6M
ADV ARDIDEN 0 -87.5 0.004 6.7M
AGY ARGOSY MINERALS 0 -67.05 0.14 133.9M
ACP AUDALIA RESOURCES 0 -28.27 0.009 10.7M
ARM AURORA MINERALS 0 -47.22 0.02 2.2M
BAU BAUXITE RESOURCES 0 3.52 0.05 11.8M
BDI BLINA MINERALS 0 -50 0.001 4.4M
BPL BROKEN HILL PROSPECTING 0 -65.17 0.03 4.6M
BYH BRYAH RESOURCES 0 -55.56 0.08 4.9M
CAD CAENEUS MINERALS 0 -66.67 0.001 14.1M
CFE CAPE LAMBERT 0 -80 0.02 16.2M
CCZ CASTILLO COPPER 0 -71.43 0.02 10.3M
CAZ CAZALY RESOURCES 0 -59.18 0.02 4.7M
CHK COHIBA MINERALS 0 15.38 0.01 10.0M
CRL COMET RESOURCES 0 -76.8 0.03 6.7M
DHR DARK HORSE RESOURCES 0 -84.48 0.004 8.9M
DTM DART MINING 0 -48.72 0.01 5.6M
DEV DEVEX RESOURCES 0 -60.34 0.05 4.2M
EME ENERGY METALS 0 10 0.12 23.1M
FCC FIRST COBALT 0 -86.67 0.17 61.1M
GBE GLOBE METALS AND MINING 0 -22.22 0.01 6.5M
GME GME RESOURCES 0 -38.34 0.09 45.8M
GED GOLDEN DEEPS 0 -44.16 0.05 7.4M
HNR HANNANS 0 -57.14 0.01 23.9M
HAV HAVILAH RESOURCES 0 -26.67 0.17 36.0M
HWK HAWKSTONE MINING 0 -40 0.02 10.3M
HGM HIGH GRADE METALS 0 -83.33 0.01 5.0M
IEC INTRA ENERGY 0 -9.09 0.01 3.9M
KLH KALIA 0 -76.92 0.003 7.5M
KTA KRAKATOA RESOURCES 0 -53.7 0.03 2.9M
LRS LATIN RESOURCES 0 -82.14 0.002 7.1M
LCD LATITUDE CONSOLIDATED 0 -25 0.02 5.0M
MQR MARQUEE RESOURCES 0 -88.24 0.06 2.6M
MZZ MATADOR MINING 0 -55.41 0.17 8.9M
MLM METALLICA MINERALS 0 -50.98 0.03 8.1M
MTC METALSTECH 0 -87.27 0.04 4.1M
MTH MITHRIL RESOURCES 0 -89.98 0.01 2.1M
MTB MOUNT BURGESS 0 -60 0.004 1.8M
NVA NOVA MINERALS 0 -57.89 0.02 18.6M
OAR OAKDALE RESOURCES 0 -48.78 0.02 1.4M
PLL PIEDMONT LITHIUM 0 -49.74 0.1 65.3M
PIO PIONEER RESOURCES 0 -43.33 0.02 25.6M
POS POSEIDON NICKEL 0 0 0.04 113.6M
PSC PROSPECT RESOURCES 0 -63.33 0.02 45.0M
PM1 PURE MINERALS 0 -23.81 0.02 5.0M
RMX RED MOUNTAIN MINING 0 -77.42 0.01 5.4M
RNU RENASCOR RESOURCES 0 -57.14 0.02 20.8M
RTR RUMBLE RESOURCES 0 -28.79 0.05 16.8M
SYA SAYONA MINING 0 -79.8 0.02 34.3M
SCI SILVER CITY MINERALS 0 -58.33 0.02 4.4M
SXX SOUTHERN CROSS EXPLORATION 0 -33.33 0.01 6.5M
SUH SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE MINING 0 -76.15 0.03 2.7M
SEI SPECIALITY METALS INTERNATIONAL 0 -29.41 0.02 13.3M
SRN SUREFIRE RESOURCES 0 -59.17 0.01 3.1M
TNG TNG 0 -30 0.11 101.2M
WKT WALKABOUT RESOURES 0 -31.03 0.11 30.4M
LIT LITHIUM AUSTRALIA -1.1 -52.63 0.09 41.8M
CZI CASSINI RESOURCES -1.16 14.86 0.09 29.4M
NMT NEOMETALS -2.17 -46.71 0.22 122.4M
ASN ANSON RESOURCES -2.67 -70.2 0.07 36.2M
FGR FIRST GRAPHENE -2.94 -5.71 0.16 68.3M
GLN GALAN LITHIUM -3.12 226.32 0.31 34.6M
HXG HEXAGON RESOURCES -3.45 -12.5 0.14 40.8M
SGQ ST GEORGE MINING -3.57 -40 0.13 40.2M
CHN CHALICE GOLD -3.85 -14.53 0.13 33.3M
ARU ARAFURA RESOURCES -4 -61.74 0.05 34.6M
LTR LIONTOWN RESOURCES -4 -52.94 0.02 27.2M
LPI LITHIUM POWER -4.08 -58.04 0.23 61.7M
KAI KAIROS MINERALS -4.17 -51.06 0.02 19.6M
THR THOR MINING -4.17 -50 0.02 16.5M
NZC NZURI COPPER -4.26 -46.43 0.23 66.6M
SO4 SALT LAKE POTASH -4.44 -14 0.43 88.7M
BSX BLACKSTONE MINERALS -4.76 -81.98 0.1 10.8M
HIG HIGHLANDS PAC -4.76 3.09 0.1 109.3M
ZNC ZENITH MINERALS -4.76 -60 0.08 17.0M
POW PROTEAN ENERGY -5 -44.12 0.02 5.8M
BEM BLACKEARTH MINERALS -5.06 -- 0.08 4.6M
FEL FE -5.26 -75 0.02 6.7M
GPX GRAPHEX MINING -5.26 -40 0.19 14.5M
COB COBALT BLUE -5.41 -78.13 0.17 21.8M
BMT BERKUT MINERALS -5.56 -66 0.07 3.7M
NWC NEW WORLD COBALT -5.56 -83 0.02 9.0M
RDS REDSTONE RESOURCES -5.56 47.19 0.02 8.0M
AVZ AVZ MINERALS -5.63 -79.7 0.07 126.5M
PUR PURSUIT MINERALS -5.77 -55.45 0.05 7.0M
VMC VENUS METALS -5.88 10.34 0.15 13.9M
CLA CELSIUS RESOURCES -5.97 -51.54 0.06 47.7M
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES -6.25 -82.56 0.02 6.3M
SVD SCANDIVANADIUM -6.25 -40.79 0.02 5.3M
OKR OKAPI RESOURCES -6.38 -74.12 0.25 7.6M
TRT TODD RIVER RESOURCES -6.58 -57.4 0.07 10.8M
KOR KORAB RESOURCES -6.9 -6.9 0.03 8.3M
CZR COZIRON RESOURCES -7.14 -45.83 0.01 23.2M
CGN CRATER GOLD MINING -7.14 -13.33 0.01 3.6M
MZN MARINDI METALS -7.69 -64.71 0.01 11.9M
TAR TARUGA MINERALS -7.69 -45.45 0.06 8.5M
AUR AURIS MINERALS -7.89 -35.19 0.04 14.3M
BAT BATTERY MINERALS -8.33 -68.12 0.02 24.5M
GWR GWR GROUP -9.09 40.85 0.1 25.4M
WML WOOMERA MINING -9.46 -93.3 0.07 7.6M
CNJ CONICO -10 -60 0.02 6.3M
EUR EUROPEAN LITHIUM -10 -64 0.09 49.5M
IRC INTERMIN RES OURCES -10 -18.18 0.13 31.8M
LI3 LITHIUM CONSOLIDATED -10 -50.34 0.07 6.5M
TLG TALGA RESOURCES -10.53 -46.03 0.34 74.2M
BOA BOADICEA RESOURCES -11.11 -20 0.16 8.5M
SBR SABRE RES OURCES -11.11 -60 0.01 3.3M
WCN WHITE CLIFF MINERALS -11.11 -87.13 0.02 3.7M
INR IONEER -12.5 -53.33 0.19 257.2M
CMC CHINA MAGNESIUM -14.29 -14.29 0.02 6.3M
LML LINCOLN MINERALS -14.29 -82.86 0.01 3.4M
TKL TRAKA RESOURCES -15 -77.63 0.02 5.6M
MXR MAXIMUS RESOURCES -15.49 -65.22 0.06 1.8M
4CE FORCE COMMODITIES -16.67 -89.29 0.02 6.4M
PNN PEPINNINI LITHIUM -16.67 -91.53 0.01 3.6M
EUC EUROPEAN COBALT -18.18 -80.71 0.03 20.6M
PSM PENINSULA MINES -18.18 -67.86 0.004 3.9M
BUX BUXTON RESOURCES -18.52 -24.14 0.11 15.0M
GPP GREENPOWER ENERGY -25 -84.21 0.003 4.7M