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

Cobalt spot prices are in the doldrums — and Chinese battery maker GEM is no longer buying from miner Glencore because of it.

This is because the market price has fallen below the agreed level under a contract signed when cobalt was peaking earlier this year.

Vanadium prices are settling down – and hopefully stabilising — with consultancy Mastermines reporting a Chinese spot price of $US19.50/lb for V2O5 flake, down from a recent peak of about $US37/lb.

And lithium prices have held up in the second half of the year – despite all the nay-saying, according to Benchmark Minerals Intelligence.

Transforming Australia into a major battery hub

Many believe that booming global demand for lithium-ion batteries gives Australia a “once in a generation” opportunity to become a major battery processing, manufacturing and trading hub – but it needs to get a move on.

Australia has all the raw materials needed to produce batteries.

This potentially gives the country “significant global supply-chain advantages”, a new Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) report says.

According to Future Smart Strategies, Australia earns only $1.13 billion, or 0.53 per cent of ultimate value of its exported lithium ore.

An estimated $213 billion of value is added overseas through electro-chemical processing, battery cell production, and product assembly.

Australia has all the battery metals required for lithium-ion battery manufacturing.
Australia has all the battery metals required for lithium-ion battery manufacturing.

The Austrade report says critical components in advanced battery production — precursor, anode, cathode, electrolyte — can be made here.

But the critical gap in the supply chain is Australia’s lack of battery manufacturing technology, which is why we need one of the world’s big battery cell manufacturers to set up shop Down Under.

Austrade reckons we need to do this through incentives.

A $2 billion 15GWh gigafactory in Townsville is already being developed by an international consortium called Imperium3, led by Boston Energy and Innovation, graphite company Magnis Energy Technologies (ASX:MNS), and US company Charge CCCV.

Magnis investor relations director Travis Peluso says labour costs will be “miniscule” for a large-scale Australian lithium ion battery maker, with raw materials like lithium, cobalt, manganese, and graphite usually making up 80 per cent of the cost.

With a project of Imperium3’s scale and size, labour costs are a very small portion of the overall cost of producing a battery cell, he says.

“The labour cost component in [battery] manufacturing is miniscule,” he says.

“It’s certainly under two per cent, probably closer to one per cent of the cost.”

Labour costs are one of the key barriers to entry for large scale manufacturing in Australia, but in battery-making a high level of automation takes care of much of the process.

“When you look at the cost of producing a battery cell, around 80 per cent of the cost is in those raw materials,” Mr Peluso says.

“There are cost advantages in sourcing those raw materials, like lithium, locally.”

SMALL CAP SPOTLIGHT

Over the past 12 months only 30 stocks have come out ahead, with Argentina-focused explorer Galan Lithium (ASX:GLN) and China Magnesium (ASX:CMC) two standouts up 204 per cent and 114 per cent over the year.

Vanadium explorers Tando (ASX:TNO), Technology Metals (ASX:TMT), and Australian Vanadium (ASX:AVL) also performed well, up 76 per cent, 70 per cent, and 55 per cent respectively over the past year.

It’s been a slightly better week in the lead-up to Christmas for battery metals-facing stocks on the ASX.

Of the ~200 battery metals stocks on our list, about 67 lost ground, 58 were ahead and 64 were steady.

This week’s standout performers included Metals Australia (ASX:MLS) up 33 per cent to 0.4c, TNG (ASX:TNG) up 29 per cent to 12c, and High Grade Metals (ASX:HGM) up 27 per cent to 1.4c.

But Northern Cobalt (ASX:N27) topped the charts, up 38 per cent to 9c.

On Friday, Northern Cobalt told investors its “Running Creek” prospect had become a priority target after an IP survey identified what could be a huge copper and cobalt deposit at depth.

Investors loved the news, sending the explorer up almost 30 per cent to 8.5c by midday.

Induced Polarisation (IP) is a geophysical method used to identify the electrical chargeability of minerals below the earth’s surface, which helps explorers focus their drilling programs.

Northern Cobalt managing director Michael Schwarz told Stockhead the company had changed its plans and would drill Running Creek as soon as possible.

“We are pretty excited about this anomaly because it seems to be [directly linked] to the [existing] copper and cobalt mineralisation,” he said.

“The mineralisation could be both deeper and of a larger scale than we had previously thought.”

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

 

ASX TickerCompany NameOne Week Price Change12 Month Price ChangeCurrent Price (Mon Intraday)Market Cap
WML WOOMERA MINING0-91.90.0819.1M
MTC METALSTECH 11.11111111-89.655172410.033.5M
WCN WHITE CLIFF MINERALS-7.142857143-89.516129030.0133.0M
PNN PEPINNINI LITHIUM-16.66666667-88.372093020.0053.4M
KLH KALIA 0-86.666666670.0025.0M
RLC REEDY LAGOON 0-84.210526320.0062.4M
FCC FIRST COBALT-9.090909091-83.73983740.267.9M
MEI METEORIC RESOURCES0-81.538461540.0126.9M
MRR MINREX RESOURCES0-800.021.9M
LML LINCOLN MINERALS0-800.0074.0M
MTH MITHRIL RESOURCES20-800.0062.0M
N27 NORTHERN COBALT38.46153846-79.545454550.094.2M
CRL COMET RESOURCES3.703703704-79.259259260.0286.5M
BSX BLACKSTONE MINERALS-25-790.10511.5M
NWC NEW WORLD COBALT-20.83333333-78.160919540.01910.6M
PSM PENINSULA MINES0-77.777777780.0043.0M
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES20-77.50.0187.5M
ADV ARDIDEN 0-76.470588240.0047.5M
EUC EUROPEAN COBALT-2.222222222-76.216216220.04433.5M
MQR MARQUEE RESOURCES-11.42857143-76.153846150.0622.7M
4CE FORCE COMMODITIES14.28571429-76.119402990.0166.8M
PUR PURSUIT MINERALS-3.333333333-75.833333330.0293.9M
GPP GREENPOWER ENERGY0-750.0045.5M
CLQ CLEAN TEQ HOLDINGS2.564102564-73.941368080.4294.8M
CCZ CASTILLO COPPER-11.11111111-72.881355930.01611.5M
DHR DARK HORSE RESOURCES0-72.222222220.0059.9M
SUH SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE0-71.8750.0454.0M
HGM HIGH GRADE METALS27.27272727-70.833333330.0146.3M
SI6 SIX SIGMA METALS0-70.588235290.0052.3M
TKM TREK METALS 14.28571429-70.370370370.0082.5M
BMT BERKUT MINERALS-10-700.0723.9M
LRS LATIN RESOURCES0-700.0038.6M
INF INFINITY LITHIUM-13.88888889-68.205128210.06211.8M
AMD ARROW MINERALS 7.692307692-68.181818180.0144.4M
LPD LEPIDICO 0-67.346938780.01653.7M
BGS BIRIMIAN -2.5-66.949152540.19546.7M
BAT BATTERY MINERALS4.545454545-66.666666670.02324.5M
CAD CAENEUS MINERALS0-66.666666670.00114.1M
CDT CASTLE MINERALS11.11111111-66.666666670.012.2M
COB COBALT BLUE-2.325581395-65.28925620.2126.8M
JRV JERVOIS MINING17.5-65.185185190.23551.4M
SRN SUREFIRE RESOURCES20-64.705882350.0062.6M
CUL CULLEN RESOURCES 4.761904762-64.516129030.0223.1M
PGM PLATINA RESOURCES11.11111111-63.636363640.0615.8M
AVZ AVZ MINERALS -5-62.926829270.076145.4M
CZN CORAZON MINING20-62.50.0067.6M
THX THUNDELARRA -13.33333333-61.764705880.0138.3M
LI3 LITHIUM CONSOLIDATED4.838709677-61.764705880.0655.7M
MZN MARINDI METALS 0-61.538461540.00511.9M
AZI ALTA ZINC 0-61.538461540.0056.8M
RMX RED MOUNTAIN MINING0-61.111111110.0075.4M
MCT METALICITY 0-600.0169.6M
ARL ARDEA RESOURCES-5.172413793-59.85401460.5556.7M
SYR SYRAH RESOURCES6.5830721-59.330143541.7594.4M
SYA SAYONA MINING-18.18181818-59.090909090.01830.9M
PSC PROSPECT RESOURCES-4.166666667-58.181818180.02347.1M
CFE CAPE LAMBERT RESOURCES0-58.139534880.01818.2M
THR THOR MINING16.66666667-57.575757580.02820.1M
AUZ AUSTRALIAN MINES0-57.291666670.041115.3M
CGM COUGAR METALS 0-57.142857140.0032.9M
NVA NOVA MINERALS -9.090909091-56.521739130.0215.5M
CNJ CONICO 0-56.097560980.0186.3M
DEV DEVEX RESOURCES7.142857143-55.445544550.0454.1M
VMS VENTURE MINERALS0-55.319148940.02110.9M
AJM ALTURA MINING-5.405405405-52.054794520.175327.7M
LPI LITHIUM POWER -7.407407407-51.923076920.2564.3M
EMH EUROPEAN METALS-10.81081081-51.470588240.3349.9M
OKR OKAPI RESOURCES-2.272727273-50.574712640.2157.4M
LKE LAKE RESOURCES-3.157894737-50.270270270.09232.9M
CZR COZIRON RESOURCES-8.333333333-500.01119.6M
SGQ ST GEORGE MINING0-500.1440.2M
SCI SILVER CITY MINERALS0-500.0143.4M
SBR SABRE RESOURCES 0-500.0072.8M
MTB MOUNT BURGESS0-500.0052.2M
BDI BLINA MINERALS 0-500.0014.4M
TAR TARUGA MINERALS-7.407407407-49.494949490.057.1M
LIT LITHIUM AUSTRALIA1.052631579-49.473684210.09643.6M
MLM METALLICA MINERALS0-49.090909090.0289.0M
KTA KRAKATOA RESOURCES4-49.019607840.0263.1M
INR IONEER -5.555555556-47.692307690.17264.6M
BYH BRYAH RESOURCES-9.183673469-47.647058820.0895.4M
CAZ CAZALY RESOURCES9.523809524-46.511627910.0235.3M
TKL TRAKA RESOURCES10-46.341463410.0227.0M
NMT NEOMETALS 0-46.341463410.22122.4M
GPX GRAPHEX MINING-2.631578947-45.588235290.18514.9M
EUR EUROPEAN LITHIUM0-45.238095240.11563.2M
AXE ARCHER EXPLORATION-2.941176471-450.06614.3M
ARU ARAFURA RESOURCES-16.66666667-44.444444440.04533.5M
TON TRITON MINERALS7.142857143-44.444444440.04540.8M
SXX SOUTHERN CROSS0-44.444444440.0055.4M
ASN ANSON RESOURCES0-44.166666670.06734.2M
HWK HAWKSTONE MINING-10-43.750.01810.3M
ARM AURORA MINERALS0-43.243243240.0212.5M
KAI KAIROS MINERALS0-43.181818180.02521.3M
ESR ESTRELLA RESOURCES-15.78947368-42.857142860.0168.4M
RNU RENASCOR RESOURCES0-41.935483870.01820.8M
GME GME RESOURCES0-41.860465120.07536.2M
BPL BROKEN HILL PROSPECTING-3.03030303-41.818181820.0324.6M
AUR AURIS MINERALS -12.19512195-40.983606560.03615.1M
GED GOLDEN DEEPS 0-40.983606560.0366.2M
TRT TODD RIVER RESOURCES-5.063291139-40.944881890.07511.4M
BAR BARRA RESOURCES-3.225806452-400.0316.2M
FEL FE 21.42857143-39.285714290.0176.3M
SVM SOVEREIGN METALS-5.405405405-39.130434780.0718.8M
ENT ENTERPRISE METALS-15.38461538-38.888888890.0114.2M
MZZ MATADOR MINING-4.545454545-38.235294120.2111.3M
POW PROTEAN ENERGY -10.52631579-37.037037040.0176.1M
ZNC ZENITH MINERALS2.702702703-36.666666670.07616.8M
BAU BAUXITE RESOURCES0-36.363636360.05612.0M
CHN CHALICE GOLD4.545454545-36.111111110.11532.0M
DEG DE GREY MINING-4-35.135135140.1252.9M
PIO PIONEER RESOURCES0-34.78260870.01521.1M
AGY ARGOSY MINERALS-5.882352941-34.693877550.16152.4M
MNS MAGNIS ENERGY TECHNOLOGY1.694915254-34.065934070.3183.3M
CLA CELSIUS RESOURCES6.451612903-340.06652.6M
BKT BLACK ROCK MINING12.90322581-33.962264150.03518.8M
PLL PIEDMONT LITHIUM-4.347826087-33.333333330.1173.4M
GXY GALAXY RESOURCES1.219512195-33.064516132.49998.4M
ORE OROCOBRE 0.892857143-32.577565633.9551.0B
RTR RUMBLE RESOURCES-4.347826087-32.307692310.04417.1M
HMX HAMMER METALS 9.090909091-31.428571430.0247.0M
LTR LIONTOWN RESOURCES0-30.30303030.02326.1M
TLG TALGA RESOURCES5.194805195-30.172413790.40589.3M
OAR OAKDALE RESOURCES23.52941176-300.0211.4M
AEE AURA ENERGY 0-280.01819.3M
LCD LATITUDE CONSOLIDATED0-27.272727270.0165.0M
PLS PILBARA MINERALS-1.315789474-26.829268290.751.3B
BSM BASS METALS -6.666666667-26.315789470.01435.5M
E25 ELEMENT 25 -15-26.086956520.1714.3M
PM1 PURE MINERALS 15.38461538-250.0154.4M
AYR ALLOY RESOURCES-25-250.0034.7M
KDR KIDMAN RESOURCES-5.226480836-24.861878451.36561.4M
ARE ARGONAUT RESOURCES0-24.137931030.02234.2M
VXR VENTUREX RESOURCES-2.777777778-22.222222220.17542.0M
CXO CORE LITHIUM 15.09433962-21.794871790.06138.0M
TAW TAWANA RESOURCES0-21.518987340.31179.2M
IDA INDIANA RESOURCES3.773584906-20.289855070.0555.3M
KSN KINGSTON RESOURCES-11.11111111-200.01619.0M
MLS METALS AUSTRALIA33.33333333-200.0047.0M
NZC NZURI COPPER 3.703703704-200.2882.9M
HIG HIGHLANDS2.631578947-18.750.07880.9M
KNL KIBARAN RESOURCES-3.846153846-16.666666670.12535.8M
PMY PACIFICO MINERALS0-16.666666670.0058.1M
MIN MINERAL RESOURCES6.504922644-16.3259668515.1452.7B
SVD SCANDIVANADIUM5-160.0217.4M
HAV HAVILAH RESOURCES-13.51351351-15.789473680.1634.9M
HNR HANNANS 0-14.285714290.01221.9M
AML AEON METALS 4.166666667-13.793103450.25149.8M
AOU AUROCH MINERALS4-12.359550560.0787.7M
SRK STRIKE RESOURCES4-8.7719298250.0527.6M
VRC VOLT RESOURCES0-8.3333333330.02233.5M
TNG TNG 29.03225806-7.6923076920.12115.6M
ORN ORION MINERALS0-7.4074074070.02546.8M
KOR KORAB RESOURCES0-7.4074074070.0257.7M
ZEU ZEUS RESOURCES0-7.1428571430.0132.3M
WKT WALKABOUT RESOURCES3.333333333-70.09328.9M
ADN ANDROMEDA METALS-14.2857142900.0067.6M
DTM DART MINING 000.0076.5M
PAN PANORAMIC RESOURCES00.2673796790.375183.0M
S32 SOUTH32 9.0460526322.9503105593.31516.7B
IRC INTERMIN RESOURCES -6.8965517243.8461538460.13533.0M
SO4 SALT LAKE POTASH5.4347826094.3010752690.48599.1M
VMC VENUS METALS6.6666666676.6666666670.1615.3M
RIO RIO TINTO 5.4343293957.4961031675.86110.0B
EME ENERGY METALS011.111111110.121.0M
HXG HEXAGON RESOURCES7.40740740711.538461540.14542.3M
POS POSEIDON NICKEL-2.32558139513.513513510.042111.0M
VML VITAL METALS 014.285714290.00815.7M
GWR GWR GROUP 016.666666670.10526.6M
SEI SPECIALITY METALS16.6666666716.666666670.0146.7M
BUX BUXTON RESOURCES-7.14285714318.181818180.1317.7M
GBE GLOBE METALS AND MINING0200.0188.4M
RDS REDSTONE RESOURCES023.076923080.0168.4M
IEC INTRA ENERGY-9.090909091250.013.9M
FGR FIRST GRAPHENE030.769230770.1766.6M
DGR DGR GLOBAL 031.313131310.1382.8M
CGN CRATER GOLD MINING-2033.333333330.0163.4M
CZI CASSINI RESOURCES-1.11111111136.923076920.08930.8M
BOA BOADICEA RESOURCES28.5714285738.461538460.189.5M
CHK COHIBA MINERALS0500.01510.0M
ANW AUS TIN MINING054.545454550.01733.6M
AVL AUSTRALIAN VANADIUM-6.66666666755.555555560.02848.3M
TMT TECHNOLOGY METALS4.16666666770.454545450.37526.3M
TNO TANDO RESOURCES-5.376344086760.08817.0M
OMH OM HLDGS -1.11940298587.943262411.3251.0B
CMC CHINA MAGNESIUM0114.28571430.0310.6M
GLN GALAN LITHIUM-5.660377358204.87804880.2524.7M
JMS JUPITER MINES-3.636363636227.16049380.265519.1M
BEM BLACKEARTH MINERALS-2.2988505750.0855.2M