Nickel Miners News For The Month Of July 2022 | Seeking Alpha

2022-07-30 09:13:26 By : Ms. Tina Liu

Evgeny Gromov/iStock via Getty Images

Welcome to the nickel miners news for July. The past month saw nickel prices continue to pull back. The big news emerging in July was the U.S government's moves to support the EV supply chain (includes nickel) as well as new electric vehicle subsidies.

As of July 29, the nickel spot price was USD 9.66, lower than USD 10.84 last month. LME shows the price at USD 21,450/tonne. Nickel inventory at the London Metals Exchange [LME] was lower the past month at 57,990 tonnes (67,116 tonnes last month).

Nickel spot price chart - Current price = USD 10.84/lb

Norilsk Nickel - Forecasts a mild nickel surplus in 2022

Source: Nornickel announces consolidated production results for 1H 2022 p28

Battery nickel demand set to surge over ten fold this decade as the EV boom takes off (2020 chart)

UBS forecasts Year battery metals go into deficit (2021 chart)

Source: UBS courtesy Carlos Vincens LinkedIn

2021 IEA forecast growth in demand for selected minerals from clean energy technologies by scenario, 2040 relative to 2020 - Increases Of Lithium 13x to 42x, Graphite 8x to 25x, Cobalt 6x to 21x, Nickel 7x to 19x, Manganese 3x to 8x, Rare Earths 3x to 7x, and Copper 2x to 3x

Source: International Energy Agency 2021 report

US says it will back miners to stop China's weaponization of battery metals... “Our concern is that critical minerals could be vulnerable to manipulation, as we’ve seen in other areas, or weaponization,” Granholm said Wednesday in a meeting in Sydney with companies including BHP Group, Rio Tinto Group and Lynas Corp. “We are very serious about establishing strong relationships with Australia, and with you and with your potential customers for offtake”... Producers in nations including Australia can also access support through agencies including the Department of Energy’s loan programs office, Granholm said at the Wednesday meeting... Syrah Resources Ltd., a Melbourne-based graphite producer with facilities in Mozambique and Louisiana, in April won a $107 million commitment from the loan programs office. Rare earths producer Lynas Rare Earths Ltd. in June signed a contract with the U.S. Department of Defense to establish a plant in Texas.

Ernst, Manchin Seek to End U.S. Dependence on China for Defense Materials... Republican Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa is seeking to address this issue by teaming up with her Senate Armed Services Committee colleague, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, to sponsor the Homeland Acceleration of Recovering Deposits and Renewing Onshore Critical Keystones Act, known as the HARD Rock Act... What this act will do is it pushes the Pentagon to refocus on our National Defense Stockpile so that we can secure the materials from partners and allies and further expand our own domestic supply and then end that reliance on our adversaries,"... Some of the minerals appearing on the list that the NDS requires for its stockpile include cobalt, lithium, titanium alloy, aluminum and zinc.

Race to secure battery metals heats up as GM, Ford ink deals. Carmakers are scouring the world to diversify their supplies of raw materials needed to power EV fleets... General Motors Co. announced three deals Tuesday for supplies of raw materials needed to build a million EVs a year. Less than a week ago, Ford Motor Co. revealed a list of suppliers of inputs ranging from Argentine lithium to Indonesian nickel — enough to build 600,000 EVs a year. The world’s shift into electric vehicles means demand growth for lithium, nickel, cobalt and other key ingredients in EV batteries is outpacing supply that’s been hampered by Covid-related logistical woes and a general lack of investment, pushing up prices.

Schumer-Manchin reconciliation bill has $369 billion to fight climate change — here are the details... For individuals, a $7,500 tax credit to buy new electric vehicles and a $4,000 credit for buying a used one. Both credits would only be available to lower and middle income consumers... The Senate is set to vote on the proposed legislation next week, after which it will go to the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives.

Note: More details here on @SawyerMerritt Twitter including: "This is a big one: Commercial vehicles that weigh OVER 14,000 lbs are eligible for a $40,000 tax credit or 30% of cost of the vehicle (whatever is less). This means the @Tesla Semi will qualify."

On July 28 Investing News reported:

Nickel Price Update: Q2 2022 in Review. After reaching unprecedented levels that prompted the suspension of trading at the London Metal Exchange in the first quarter, nickel prices declined to now trade at around US$22,000 per tonne... with global economic recession fears increasing, nickel prices fell throughout the second quarter, hitting three consecutive monthly losses... “Stainless steel production rates have been falling since March and this will continue at least through July"... “we expect demand from the EV sector to jump by about 30 percent this year, driven by policy targets and further supported by an extension to subsidies in China"... Supply has been increasing in H1 and this will continue in H2, predominantly through the increase in NPI and nickel intermediates production in Indonesia... This increase in supply will see the global nickel market be in surplus this year and next, which will put downward pressure on prices, according to data from Woodmac.

Vale plans a US$1.7B Voisey's Bay expansion plan to boost their nickel production. Construction began in 2018 and is expected to be complete by 2022. You can read more here.

On July 19, Vale SA announced:

2Q22 Production Report... Nickel production was 24% lower q/q mostly due to scheduled maintenance of our downstream facilities, which was partially offset by strong performance at Onça Puma. Sales were largely in line q/q as inventories built in 1Q22 were sold in 2Q22.

On June 5, Norilsk Nickel announced:

Nornickel announces consolidated production results for 1H 2022... “In 1H2022, we increased the output of all key metals compared to the same period last year"... In 1H2022 , total nickel output increased 26% year - on - year (y - o - y) to almost 100 kt , most of which were produced from own Russian feed (99,8 kt, up 30 % y - o - y). The increase in production was attributed to the low base of the first half 2021, when Oktyabrsky and Taimyrsky mines were suspended due to the inflow o f underground water as well as the Norilsk Concentrator following a n accident.

BHP's Nickel West (includes the Mt Keith nickel mine in Australia) has a Measured and Indicated Resource of 4.1Mt contained nickel with a Total Resource contained nickel of 6.3Mt, with an average grade of 0.58% Ni in sulphide ore. Nickel West produced 80 kt of nickel in FY 2020. Stage 1 production of the Kwinana Nickel Refinery is aimed to be 100ktpa nickel sulphate.

On July 19, BHP Group announced:

BHP Operational Review for the year ended 30 June 2022... Full year nickel production was lower than revised guidance due to a smelter outage in the June 2022 quarter.

Note: FY22 nickel production was 76.8kt, 14% lower YoY. June Q22 was 18.8kt, 1% higher YoY.

On July 21, BHP Group announced:

BHP signs MOU for nickel supply with Ford Motor Company... The targeted multi-year nickel supply agreement could start as early as 2025 and may involve additional commodities over time. BHP will explore options to supply Ford Motor Company with nickel from its Nickel West asset in Western Australia, a producer of some of the most sustainable and lowest carbon intensity nickel in the world. In addition, BHP and Ford Motor Company are exploring ways to make battery supply chains more sustainable and efficient, including opportunities for further alignment on best practice and raising ESG performance transparency.

Source: BHP Group/ Nickel West

On June 30, Glencore announced: "Glencore publishes payments to governments report 2021."

Sale of BaseCore Metals LP. Glencore today announces the completion of the sale of a royalty package by BaseCore Metals LP ("BaseCore") to Sandstorm Gold Ltd. (“Sandstorm”) for total consideration of US$525 million.

No news for the month.

On July 22, Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. announced: "New 8-inch direct bonded SiC substrate development line to be established..."

On June 28, Anglo American announced: "Anglo American invests in Sanergy organic waste upcycling."

On June 30, Anglo American announced: "Anglo American agrees to combine nuGenTM with First Mode to accelerate Zero Emissions Haulage Solution..."

On July 21, Anglo American announced:

Anglo American plc production report for the second quarter ended 30 June 2022. Nickel production decreased by 3% to 10,300 tonnes, primarily due to expected lower ore grades, as a result of licensing delays that are now resolved. 2022 Guidance: Production guidance for 2022 is unchanged at 40,000 - 42,000 tonnes, subject to the extent of further Covid - 19 related disruptions. 2022 unit cost guidance is unchanged at c.495c/lb .

On July 28, Anglo American announced: "Half year financial report For the six months ended 30 June 2022." Highlights include:

On July 27, Eramet announced: "Eramet: EBITDA at €982m , continued Group deleveraging in first- half 2022." Highlights include:

On July 27, Sherritt International announced: "Higher nickel, cobalt and fertilizer prices drive Sherritt’s strong second quarter results." Highlights include:

On July 1, IGO Limited announced: "IGO acquires 70% interest in Matsa’s Fraser Range Tenement."

On July 27, IGO Limited announced: "IGO delivers on FY22 production and cost guidance." Highlights include:

Panoramic's Savannah mine and mill has a forecast life of mine average annual production rate of 10,800t of nickel, 6,100t of copper and 800t of cobalt metal contained in concentrate.

On July 20, Panoramic Resources announced: "Savannah Commercial Production and FY23 Guidance." Highlights include:

On July 21, Panoramic Resources announced: "Underground Savannah drilling u pdate." Highlights include:

On July 28, Panoramic Resources announced: "Quarterly activities report for the period ending 30 June 202 2." Highlights include:

On June 25, Nickel Industries Limited announced:

Angel Nickel Power Plant commences commissioning. The Directors of Nickel Industries Limited (‘Nickel Industries’ or ‘the Company’) are pleased to announce that the Company’s 80%-owned Angel Nickel Project (‘Angel Nickel’ or ‘the Project’) has commenced commissioning of its 380MW power plant within the Indonesia Weda Bay Industrial Park (‘IWIP’) on Halmahera Island...

On June 28, Nickel Industries Limited announced:

Quarterly activities report for the quarter ended 30 June 2022. Record EBITDA from operations of US$103.2M as Angel Nickel production ramps up and Hengjaya Mine benefits from higher realised ore prices...

On June 30, Nickel 28 announced: "Nickel 28 files fiscal Q1 financial statements." Highlights include:

...Highlights from Ramu and the Company during the quarter include:

Mincor Resources [ASX:MCR] (OTCPK:MCRZF)

Owns the Kambalda Nickel Operations (includes the Cassini nickel sulphide mine), just south of Kambalda in Western Australia. First nickel concentrate production began in Q2 2022.

On July 25, Mincor Resources announced: "Initial resource of 22,600 nickel tonnes for new LN04a surface sets strong foundation for growth at the Golden Mile. Significant new Mineral Resource confirms the potential for new, high-grade nickel sulphide discoveries that will underpin mine life extensions at the Northern Operations." Highlights include:

First Quantum Minerals [TSX:FM] (OTCPK:FQVLF), Franco-Nevada [TSX:FNV] (FNV), MMG [HK:1208], South32 [ASX:S32] (OTCPK:SOUHY) (OTCPK:SHTLF), Lundin Mining [TSX:LUN] (OTCPK:LUNMF), Nickel Asia Corporation [PSE:NIKL] (NCKAF, Platinum Group Metals’ [TSX:PTM] (PLG).

Horizonte is developing its 100% owned Araguaia Nickel Project (Araguaia) as Brazil’s next major ferronickel mine.

On July 13, Horizonte Minerals Plc announced:

Completion of awards of key process plant contracts at the Araguaia Nickel Project...To date we have awarded contracts totalling US$293 million (including the US$135 million of process equipment noted above) on budget and on time, which continues the positive momentum building at Araguaia..."

On July 19, Horizonte Minerals Plc announced:

Horizonte announces community development agreement with leading national industrial training provider for the Araguaia Project.

On July 4, Poseidon Nickel announced: "More Nickel in updated Black Swan Disseminated Mineral Resource." Highlights include:

On July 12, Poseidon Nickel announced: "Black Swan restart Project update." Highlights include:

On June 30, Amur Minerals Corp. announced: "Audited final results for the year ended 31 December 2021." Highlights include:

Tamarack is a high grade nickel-copper-cobalt project located in Minnesota, USA, with considerable exploration upside. Talon Metals owns a 51% project share, with potential to further earn-in to a 60% share by 2026.

On July 13, Talon Metals announced: "US EV battery supply chain: Talon Metals announces thick high-grade nickel-copper assay results from the Tamarack Nickel Project." Highlights include:

On July 5, Garibaldi Resources announced: "Garibaldi announces $3.0 million financing..."

Owns the West Musgrave nickel-copper project in Western Australia as well as several other mines.

On July 25, OZ Minerals announced: "Second quarter report 2022 for the three months ending 30 June 2022." Highlights include:

The Cathedrals, Stricklands and Investigators nickel-copper discoveries (at Mt Alexander) are located on E29/638, which is held in joint venture by Western Areas Limited (25%) and St George (75%). St George is the Manager of the Project with Western Areas retaining a 25% non-contributing interest in the Project (in regard to E29/638 only) until there is a decision to mine.

On July 13, St George Mining Ltd. announced:

Drilling update – Paterson Project. Copper sulphides and highly prospective lithologies with alteration and hydrothermal veining logged in three latest drill holes.

No news for the month.

No news for the month.

On July 6, Canada Nickel Company announced: "Updated Mineral Resource estimate doubles measured & indicated resources at Canada Nickel’s Crawford Nickel Sulphide Project." Highlights include:

On July 20, Canada Nickel Company announced: "Canada Nickel identifies new method for accelerated CO2 capture ."

Investors can view a CEO video here, or a CEO interview here on Trend Investing.

No news for the month.

On July 19, Ardea Resources announced: " Quarterly operations report for the quarter ended 30 June 2022." Highlights include:

Centaurus Metals is an Australian-based minerals exploration company focused on the near-term development of the Jaguar Nickel Sulphide Project, in Northern Brazil.

On July 20, Centaurus Metals Limited announced: "Jaguar powering towards Q3 resource upgrade as drilling continues to deliver strong results. Visual logs 1 from the deepest drill-holes completed to date show semi-massive nickel sulphide mineralisation well below the December 2021 Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) envelope. " Highlights include:

On July 27, Centaurus Metals Limited announced: "Jaguar taking shape as a globally significant nickel project as essential project milestones are delivered. In-fill drilling and flotation testwork complete, updated MRE on track, DFS advancing well ."

TMC the metals company (TMC)

On July 12, The Metals Company announced:

The Metals Company contracts CSIRO-led Consortium to pioneer ecosystem-based environmental monitoring and management plan for deep-sea nodule collection.

On July 22, Widgie Nickel announced: "Significant by-product assays received for Gillett North discovery hole ." Highlights include:

On July 27, Widgie Nickel announced: "June 2022 quarterly report ." Highlights include:

On July 28, Widgie Nickel reported: "Resource growth potential confirmed at Gillett North."

Artemis Resources [ASV:ARV], Australian Mines [ASX:AUZ], Blackstone Minerals [ASX:BSX], Cassini Resources [ASX: CZI] (OTC:CSSQF), Class 1 Nickel and Technologies Ltd. [CSE:NICO] (OTCQB:NICLF), Electra Battery Materials [TSXV:ELBM] (ELBMF) (Electra Battery Materials Park), Electric Royalties [TSXV:ELEC], Flying Nickel Mining Corp. [TSXV:FLYN], FPX Nickel [TSXV:FPX], Grid Metals Corp [TSXV:GRDM], Go Metals [CSE:GOCO] (OTCPK:GOCOF), Horizonte Minerals Plc [TSXV:HZM] [LON:HZM] (OTCPK:HZMMF), Huntsman Exploration [TSXV:HMAN] (OTCPK:BBBMF), Inomin Mines [TSXV:MINE], Jervois Global Limited [ASX:JRV] (OTCQX:JRVMF), New Age Metals [TXV:NAM], Nickel Creek Platinum [TSX:NCP] (OTCQX:NCPCF), Nordic Nickel Limited [ASX:NNL], Pancontinental Resources Corporation [TSXV:PUC], Polymet Mining [TSX:POM], Power Nickel [TSXV:PNPN] (OTCQB:CMETF), Renforth Resources [CSE:RFR] (OTCQB:RFHRF), Rox Resources [ASX:RXL], S2 Resources (ASX:S2R), Stillwater Critical Minerals [TSXV:PGE] (OTCQB:PGEZF), Sunrise Energy Metals [ASX:SRL] (OTCQX:SREMF), Surge Battery Metals Inc. [TSXV:NILI] [FRA:DJ5C] (OTCPK:NILIF), Talisman Mining Ltd. [ASX:TLM], Tartisan Nickel Corp. [CSE:TN] (OTCQX:TTSRF), Transition Metals [TSXV:XTM], URU Metals Ltd. [LSE:URU] [GR:NVRA], Wall Bridge Mining [TSX:WM], and Zeb Nickel Corp. [TSXV:ZBNI] (OTCQB:ZBNIF).

Note: Some of the above companies are covered in the Cobalt monthly news.

Nickel spot prices were lower last month and LME inventory was lower.

Highlights for the month were:

As usual all comments are welcome.

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The Latest Electric Vehicle, Battery & EV Metal Miner Trends - July 2022

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Disclosure: I/we have a beneficial long position in the shares of BHP GROUP [ASX:BHP], VALE SA (VALE), NORILSK NICKEL [LSE:MNOD], ARDEA RESOURCES [ASX:ARL], JERVOIS GLOBAL [TSXV:JRV], ELECTRA BATTERY MATERIALS [TSXV:ELBM], WIDGIE NICKEL [ASX:WIN] either through stock ownership, options, or other derivatives. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional disclosure: This article is for ‘information purposes only’ and should not be considered as any type of advice or recommendation. Readers should "Do Your Own Research" ("DYOR") and all decisions are your own. See also Seeking Alpha Terms of Use of which all site users must agree to follow.