Batteries Juicing the Nickel Market: LME Nickel Sulfate Contracts in 2019? (Investing News Network – October 8, 2018)

Investing News Network

This INNspired Article is brought to you by Tartisan Nickel Corp.

The recently announced LME nickel sulfate contracts under consideration are a strong indication that the nickel sulfate market and upstream nickel sulfide market are facing considerable growth. Annual sales of electric vehicles are expected to climb from 1.1 million in 2017 to 30 million by 2030. Each one requiring a battery chock full of base metals, especially lithium, cobalt and nickel sulfate.

The price of nickel has climbed nearly 60 percent since mid-2015 on an improved nickel demand forecast, mainly from the steel sector. The surging demand for electric vehicles (EVs) and in turn base metals such as nickel is expected to push those prices up further.

The impressive growth outlook for battery materials has prompted the London Metals Exchange (LME) to consider offering a suite of battery materials futures contracts in 2019 — including lithium, cobalt and nickel sulfate — to better take advantage of the booming EV market.

The fact that the LME is exploring the launch of a nickel sulfate premium contract along with two of the other most prominent battery materials bodes well for this market and for the miners who produce the metal, as well as valuation for miners with compliant nickel resources in the ground.

Electric vehicle demand and nickel prices

Nickel’s strength and non-corrosive properties make it the ideal alloying metal in the manufacturing of stainless steel used in a broad range of industries including automotive, construction, household appliances and machinery. This sector accounts for nearly 70 percent of global nickel demand and stainless steel is expected to be a US$133.8 billion market by 2025, according Grand View Research.

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