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

It’s a pretty tough market for junior explorers right now, there’s no doubt about it.

But  investor confidence could be returning to the beaten-up lithium small cap space as metal prices stabilise and a slew of significant global announcements puts electric vehicle (EV) adoption on the fast track.

Over the last year just under 14 per cent of the lithium-facing stocks on our list have made share price gains (see graph below).

But this has been trending up over the last month or so, and in the last fortnight – to Tuesday November 20 — more than 36 per cent had made share price gains.

The number of stocks moving into negative territory has also dropped significantly over this time.

lithium
The overall performance of ASX lithium stocks has improved over the last month.

A number of big announcements are supercharging investor confidence, as fears of lithium oversupply subside.

For starters, Australia’s mid-tier lithium miners are making good profits and actually expanding as customers demand more product.

PwC’s 12th Aussie Mine Report, which analyses the 50 biggest ASX-listed mining companies with market values under $5 billion (MT50), shows overall market capitalisation up 28 per cent to $58.7 billion.

The push to electric vehicles means lithium miners are now the second biggest contributor to growth in terms of dollar value to the group’s total market capitalisation.

There are now seven lithium-related companies in the 50 mid-tier ASX miners list.

“Lithium was a standout, but we’re also seeing interest in other tech metals like manganese, nickel and rare earth,” says PwC Australia mining leader, Chris Dodd.

At the same time, global lithium heavyweight Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) is stepping up its investment in Australia because of “a significant acceleration in demand for lithium hydroxide” from EV battery makers.

Lithium hydroxide is often cheaper to produce from hard rock mines — like those found in Western Australia — than brine operations, like those found in Chile.

This echoes commentary from fellow lithium producer SQM (NYSE:SQM).

“We have been positively surprised by the demand growth in the lithium market, especially lithium hydroxide,” SQM’s chief executive Patricio de Solminihac told investors last week.

“We believe that total lithium demand growth will surpass 25 per cent this year. As a result, prices in the lithium market remain strong.”

Australian mid cap Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) revealed last week that it had inked an “exclusivity agreement” with Albemarle for a potential $1.5 billion sale of 50 per cent in its Wodgina lithium mine in WA’s Pilbara.

Investors loved the news, driving MinRes shares up over 32 per cent.

Albemarle already has a 49 per cent stake in Talison Lithium, which operates the Greenbushes mine — the world’s largest hard rock lithium mine — 250km south of Perth.

 

Small cap spotlight

Of the ~200 battery metals stocks on our list, about 102 lost ground, 48 were ahead and 41 were steady.

Major small cap winners included Pepinnini Lithium (ASX:PNN) up 40 per cent, Six Sigma Metals (ASX:SI6) up 20 per cent, and Pacifico Minerals (ASX:PMY), also up 20 per cent.

At Metals Australia’s (ASX:MLS) Lac Rainy graphite project in Quebec,  a sampling program returned results including 20.4m at an average grade of 15.6 per cent total carbon-within-graphite (Cg), including 4.5 metres at an average grade of 20 per cent Cg.

Investors liked the news, sending the explorer’s share price up 33 per cent to 0.4c for the week.

(Typical graphite grades average around 10-15 per cent, so 20 per cent and above is very good.)

Outcomes from the Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ) BFS.
Outcomes from the Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ) BFS.

Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ)  dropped 23 per cent to about 4c after the explorer released a bankable feasibility study (BFS) on its mammoth Sconi nickel cobalt project in Queensland.

The battery metals project in Queensland could make profits of $2.6 billion over an initial 18-year life — but it will also cost over $1.3 billion to build, and that has made investors wary.

The market is now waiting for Australian Mines to finalise project funding through a combination of debt and equity before it gets too excited.

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 Company Name One Week Change One Year Change Price November 26 (intra-day) $AU Market Cap
MOX MONAX MINING 0.5 -0.625 0.002 2.2M
PNN PEPINNINI LITHIU 0.4 -0.825 0.01 4.8M
MLS METALS AUSTRALIA 0.3333 -0.2 0.004 9.4M
IEC INTRA ENERGY 0.25 1.5 0.02 5.8M
THR THOR MINING 0.2 -0.1176 0.04 20.3M
SI6 SIX SIGMA METALS 0.2 -0.6667 0.01 2.7M
PMY PACIFICO MINERALS 0.2 -0.1429 0.01 9.8M
MRR MINREX RESOURCES 0.2 -0.8333 0.02 2.9M
ANW AUS TIN MINING 0.1765 1 0.02 39.6M
BOA BOADICEA RESOURCES 0.1667 0.0938 0.18 9.2M
MIN MINERAL RESOURCES 0.1561 -0.1744 14.45 2.9B
INF INFINITY LITHIUM 0.1538 -0.5135 0.09 17.1M
TRT TODD RIVER RESOURCES 0.1205 -0.4071 0.09 8.8M
CXO CORE LITHIUM 0.1132 -0.2625 0.06 37.4M
NMT NEOMETALS 0.1111 -0.4118 0.24 136.0M
CMC CHINA MAGNESIUM 0.1071 0.2917 0.03 9.8M
ARL ARDEA RESOURCES 0.104 -0.5519 0.63 72.4M
GPX GRAPHEX MINING 0.0909 -0.2258 0.25 19.3M
JRV JERVOIS MINING 0.0857 -0.6885 0.19 42.4M
BPL BROKEN HILL PROSPECTING 0.0833 -0.25 0.04 5.8M
AML AEON METALS 0.0769 0.0566 0.28 164.5M
TAW TAWANA RESOURCES 0.0755 -0.25 0.28 164.8M
HXG HEXAGON RESOURCES 0.0741 -0.0938 0.14 42.3M
PM1 PURE MINERALS 0.0714 -0.3478 0.02 4.7M
GBE GLOBE METALS & MINING 0.0714 -0.1176 0.01 7.0M
DGR DGR GLOBAL 0.0714 0.4286 0.15 92.0M
SO4 SALT LAKE POTASH 0.0698 -0.08 0.45 94.0M
THX THUNDELARRA 0.0667 -0.5556 0.02 10.2M
NZC NZURI COPPER 0.0625 0.275 0.27 75.5M
LCD LATITUDE CONSOLIDATED 0.0588 -0.3571 0.02 5.0M
OKR OKAPI RESOURCES 0.0571 -0.6509 0.19 6.4M
MCT METALICITY 0.05 -0.4324 0.02 12.7M
ARM AURORA MINERALS 0.05 -0.4615 0.02 2.5M
HGM HIGH GRADE METALS 0.0455 -0.549 0.02 9.1M
LTR LIONTOWN RESOURCES 0.0435 -0.04 0.02 27.2M
PLL PIEDMONT LITHIUM 0.04 -0.3158 0.13 72.7M
BMT BERKUT MINERALS 0.038 -0.6653 0.08 4.5M
IDA INDIANA RESOURCE 0.037 -0.3261 0.06 5.4M
FGR FIRST GRAPHENE 0.0323 0.7391 0.16 64.6M
KDR KIDMAN RESOURCES 0.0321 -0.0375 1.27 513.4M
MLM METALLICA MINERALS 0.0286 -0.2941 0.03 11.6M
E25 ELEMENT 25 0.0278 -0.3833 0.18 15.5M
CZI CASSINI RESOURCES 0.0217 0.2533 0.09 32.5M
LIT LITHIUM AUSTRALIA 0.0211 -0.5268 0.1 45.0M
TAR TARUGA MINERALS 0.0169 -0.3023 0.06 8.5M
GME GME RESOURCES 0.0133 -0.4903 0.08 36.6M
SYR SYRAH RESOURCES 0.0116 -0.6014 1.69 601.3M
HIG HIGHLANDS PACIFIC 0.0104 0.1279 0.1 106.0M
ZEU ZEUS RESOURCES 0 -0.2353 0.01 2.3M
WCN WHITE CLIFF MINERALS 0 -0.9216 0.01 3.0M
VML VITAL METALS 0 -0.2222 0.01 12.2M
VMC VENUS METALS 0 0 0.16 14.8M
TNO TANDO RESOURCES 0 0.5637 0.11 21.3M
SUH SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE MINING 0 -0.7135 0.04 4.6M
SRK STRIKE RESOURCES 0 -0.1791 0.06 8.0M
SGQ ST GEORGE MINING 0 -0.5373 0.16 46.2M
SBR SABRE RESOURCES 0 -0.1111 0.01 3.3M
RNU RENASCOR RESOURCES 0 -0.3571 0.02 20.8M
RLC REEDY LAGOON 0 -0.8568 0.01 2.8M
RDS REDSTONE RESOURCES 0 0.3586 0.02 7.9M
PUR PURSUIT MINERALS 0 -0.7931 0.03 4.1M
PLS PILBARA MINERALS 0 -0.1347 0.82 1.5B
MTB MOUNT BURGESS 0 -0.5 0.01 2.2M
LRS LATIN RESOURCES 0 -0.5556 0 11.4M
LPD LEPIDICO 0 -0.7703 0.02 57.1M
IRC INTERMIN RESOURCES 0 -0.0882 0.14 36.5M
HAV HAVILAH RESOURCES 0 -0.0513 0.19 40.4M
GXY GALAXY RESOURCES 0 -0.2722 2.58 1.1B
GWR GWR GROUP 0 0.1 0.11 27.8M
FEL FE LTD 0 -0.5 0.01 5.2M
DHR DARK HORSE RESOURCES 0 -0.5385 0.01 11.9M
DEV DEVEX RESOURCES 0 -0.6045 0 4.4M
CZN CORAZON MINING 0 -0.6111 0.01 8.9M
CNJ CONICO 0 -0.4054 0.02 7.7M
CLL COLLERINA COBALT 0 -0.0481 0.12 68.1M
CGN CRATER GOLD MINING 0 -0.2308 0.02 5.6M
CDT CASTLE MINERALS 0 -0.7556 0.01 2.5M
CCZ CASTILLO COPPER 0 -0.4043 0.03 16.2M
CAD CAENEUS MINERALS 0 -0.6667 0 14.1M
BUX BUXTON RESOURCES 0 0.1154 0.14 16.8M
BSX BLACKSTONE MINERALS 0 -0.734 0.13 12.0M
BSM BASS METALS 0 0.0556 0.02 48.2M
BGS BIRIMIAN 0 -0.4937 0.2 46.7M
BDI BLINA MINERALS 0 -0.5 0 4.3M
BAU BAUXITE RESOURCES 0 -0.3133 0.06 12.2M
BAT BATTERY MINERALS 0 -0.6029 0.03 30.1M
AYR ALLOY RESOURCES 0 0 0 6.3M
AUR AURIS MINERALS 0 -0.2258 0.04 19.6M
ARE ARGONAUT RESOURCES 0 -0.2083 0.02 29.5M
BYH BRYAH RESOURCES -0.0101 -0.4703 0.1 5.5M
MZZ MATADOR MINING -0.0189 0.0833 0.26 14.0M
FCC FIRST COBALT -0.0189 0.26 88.2M
POS POSEIDON NICKEL -0.0217 0.0465 0.05 118.9M
AJM ALTURA MINING -0.0233 -0.4545 0.21 382.3M
BAR BARRA RESOURCES -0.0278 -0.2857 0.03 18.9M
BKT BLACK ROCK MINING -0.0294 -0.5 0.04 17.7M
WKT WALKABOUT RESOURCES -0.0309 -0.2167 0.09 28.6M
RIO RIO TINTO -0.0319 0.0662 74.05 111.4B
CHN CHALICE GOLD MINES -0.0323 -0.1892 0.16 40.0M
CLA CELSIUS RESOURCES -0.0328 -0.528 0.06 42.8M
N27 NORTHERN COBALT -0.0333 -0.826 0.09 4.4M
JMS JUPITER MINES -0.0333 0.29 568.1M
KNL KIBARAN RESOURCES -0.0357 -0.129 0.13 37.2M
AVZ AVZ MINERALS -0.037 -0.675 0.08 147.3M
SYA SAYONA MINING -0.0385 -0.5455 0.02 42.9M
OMH OM HOLDINGS -0.0387 1.6 1.38 1.0B
KTA KRAKATOA RESOURCES -0.04 -0.5385 0.02 2.8M
CUL CULLEN RESOURCES -0.04 -0.4545 0.02 2.8M
POW PROTEAN ENERGY -0.0417 -0.2581 0.02 7.1M
KAI KAIROS MINERALS -0.0417 -0.6567 0.02 19.6M
DEG DE GREY MINING -0.0417 -0.4889 0.12 44.4M
WML WOOMERA MINING -0.0426 0.09 10.1M
ORN ORION MINERALS -0.0435 -0.3529 0.02 41.2M
EUR EUROPEAN LITHIUM -0.0435 0.0476 0.11 60.3M
KSN KINGSTON RESOURCES -0.0455 0.1053 0.02 25.7M
KRC KING RIVER COPPER -0.0465 2.4167 0.04 50.8M
ESR ESTRELLA RESOURCES -0.0476 -0.3333 0.02 9.8M
PGM PLATINA RESOURCES -0.05 -0.6647 0.06 15.1M
VXR VENTUREX RESOURCES -0.0526 -0.3684 0.19 43.2M
AXE ARCHER EXPLORATION -0.0533 -0.4741 0.08 13.6M
RTR RUMBLE RESOURCES -0.0566 -0.2958 0.05 17.9M
CLQ CLEAN TEQ HOLDINGS -0.0575 -0.7153 0.39 306.0M
PIO PIONEER RESOURCES -0.0588 -0.4839 0.02 24.1M
COB COBALT BLUE -0.0612 -0.193 0.22 26.7M
S32 SOUTH32 -0.0651 -0.0678 3.1 16.1B
SVM SOVEREIGN METALS -0.0667 -0.44 0.07 19.4M
AMD ARROW MINERALS -0.0667 -0.7455 0.01 4.4M
TON TRITON MINERALS -0.0682 -0.4533 0.04 38.0M
PAN PANORAMIC RESOURCES -0.0698 -0.053 0.38 197.8M
ARU ARAFURA RESOURCES -0.0725 -0.3683 0.06 40.3M
GLN GALAN LITHIUM -0.0741 2.5714 0.25 24.2M
PSC PROSPECT RESOURCES -0.0769 -0.5472 0.03 49.1M
HNR HANNANS -0.0769 -0.25 0.01 23.9M
HWK HAWKSTONE MINING -0.0833 -0.2903 0.02 12.5M
4CE FORCE COMMODITIES -0.0833 -0.6207 0.02 9.3M
LPI LITHIUM POWER -0.0847 -0.5091 0.27 70.9M
SPI SPITFIRE MATERIALS -0.0857 -0.488 0.07 58.6M
MNS MAGNIS ENERGY -0.0857 -0.2558 0.32 195.6M
ORE OROCOBRE -0.086 -0.3015 4.09 1.1B
CRL COMET RESOURCES -0.0882 -0.6702 0.03 6.4M
ASN ANSON RESOURCES -0.0889 -0.287 0.08 40.5M
LI3 LITHIUM CONSOLIDATED -0.0899 -0.5737 0.08 7.3M
VRC VOLT RESOURCES -0.0909 -0.2593 0.02 29.1M
TNG TNG LTD -0.0909 -0.3333 0.11 96.1M
MTC METALSTECH -0.0909 -0.871 0.04 4.7M
CFE CAPE LAMBERT RESOURCES -0.0909 -0.0909 0.02 20.2M
BEM BLACKEARTH MINERALS -0.0909 0.09 5.5M
AEE AURA ENERGY -0.0952 -0.2692 0.02 20.4M
EMH EUROPEAN METALS -0.0976 -0.5287 0.36 52.3M
MZN MARINDI METALS -0.1 -0.7472 0.01 8.9M
TKL TRAKA RESOURCES -0.1071 -0.5455 0.03 8.3M
TLG TALGA RESOURCES -0.1111 -0.3043 0.41 87.1M
OAR OAKDALE RESOURCES -0.1111 -0.6279 0.02 1.0M
MEI METEORIC RESOURCES -0.1111 -0.7538 0.02 9.2M
KOR KORAB RESOURCES -0.1111 -0.1111 0.03 7.4M
EUC EUROPEAN COBALT -0.1111 -0.8182 0.04 30.5M
ZNC ZENITH MINERALS -0.1176 -0.3478 0.08 16.0M
RMX RED MOUNTAIN MINING -0.125 -0.6111 0.01 4.7M
GPP GREENPOWER ENERGY -0.125 -0.8158 0 5.5M
DTM DART MINING -0.125 0.0256 0.01 6.0M
AGY ARGOSY MINERALS -0.125 -0.0233 0.21 193.9M
ADN ANDROMEDA METALS -0.125 -0.125 0.01 7.6M
CAZ CAZALY RESOURCES -0.1304 -0.5122 0.02 4.6M
SCI SILVER CITY MINERALS -0.1333 -0.5667 0.01 3.2M
HMX HAMMER METALS -0.1333 -0.2973 0.03 7.2M
SXX SOUTHERN CROSS -0.1429 -0.4 0.01 6.5M
SEI SPECIALITY METALS -0.1429 -0.2 0.01 6.7M
LML LINCOLN MINERALS -0.1429 -0.8421 0.01 3.4M
AOU AUROCH MINERALS -0.1429 -0.7391 0.06 5.9M
ADV ARDIDEN -0.1429 -0.6667 0.01 10.1M
NWC NEW WORLD COBALT -0.1471 -0.7769 0.03 15.4M
MQR MARQUEE RESOURCES -0.1538 -0.692 0.08 3.3M
LKE LAKE RESOURCES -0.1538 -0.4054 0.11 39.6M
ENT ENTERPRISE METALS -0.1538 -0.5 0.01 4.2M
CZR COZIRON RESOURCES -0.1538 -0.5926 0.01 19.6M
VMS VENTURE MINERALS -0.16 -0.5532 0.02 10.9M
NVA NOVA MINERALS -0.16 0.4 0.02 16.4M
TMT TECHNOLOGY METALS -0.1667 0.9565 0.43 31.5M
TKM TREK METALS -0.1667 -0.697 0.01 3.1M
PSM PENINSULA MINES -0.1667 -0.7619 0.01 4.3M
AZI ALTA ZINC -0.1667 -0.6429 0.01 6.8M
GED GOLDEN DEEPS -0.1778 -0.26 0.04 6.3M
KLH KALIA -0.2 -0.75 0 10.1M
SRN SUREFIRE RESOURCES -0.2222 -0.5917 0.01 3.1M
MTH MITHRIL RESOURCES -0.2272 -0.8409 0.01 1.2M
AUZ AUSTRALIAN MINES -0.2333 -0.4524 0.04 129.4M
AVL AUSTRALIAN VANADIUM -0.25 0.5 0.03 45.9M
CHK COHIBA MINERALS -0.2857 -0.375 0.01 2.8M
EME ENERGY METALS -0.3333 -0.2308 0.1 21.0M
CGM COUGAR METALS -0.3333 -0.8571 0 1.9M
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES -0.4667 -0.7975 0.02 6.7M