Research Briefing | Apr 24, 2024

Battery raw material prices to recover

Battery raw materials prices bottomed out last quarter and we think a sustained recovery is looming. Midstream EV battery manufacturing activity has picked up again and inventories have returned to historical levels, suggesting upstream demand for raw materials will also bounce back.

What you will learn:

  • We expect global supply growth to slow down this year as low prices and falling margins are forcing some miners to halt production, adding to the upward pressure on prices. As a result, we expect lithium, cobalt, and natural graphite prices to recover in the short term. That said, we think built-in oversupply will prevent prices from reaching their 2022 highs.
  • We forecast lithium hydroxide prices to average US$20.6/kg and carbonate prices to average US$20,387/metric ton in 2024, while the average natural graphite prices will reach US$558/ metric ton.
  • Cobalt’s role in the global shift to EVs will largely depend on the prevailing battery chemistry that manufacturers choose. Still, we expect cobalt prices will follow a similar path to lithium’s and forecast an average price of US$30,736/metric ton this year.
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