Global cobalt short-term outlook June 2023
Renewed battery demand and tightened feedstock supply have breathed some life into the cobalt market. As market sentiment improves alongside fundamentals, cobalt prices started to trend upwards after hitting a three-year low of below US$14/b in late May. Supply-side risks are running high, with logistic delays lingering and government-miner disputes increasing in the DRC. On the demand side, the discussions at the Paris Airshow have sent strong demand signals from the defence aviation sector, shoring up sentiment in an already tight alloy cobalt market. An early demand from cobalt tetroxide is driving a shopping spree for LCO producers to restock. China’s restocking can further tighten metal spot supply, supporting prices. Short-term risks are skewed to the upside.