Cold water was thrown on the lithium market in 2018, with prices falling and lithium miners’ equity prices falling alongside. We at Fastmarkets believe the price weakness has been front-loaded with the market deleveraging into the prospect of two-to-three years of supply surplus.
We expect further price weakness in 2019, though not as much as seen in 2018. However, it may take a while for a bullish price outlook to return as the significant supply response in 2018, which is forecast to continue in 2019, now means the bulls will have to wait for demand to outstrip supply again.
Given electric vehicles (EV) are positioned at the early stage on the S-Curve pattern of innovation, the demand outlook is exceptionally strong. Therefore, Fastmarkets is bullish for lithium demand over the next two to three decades.
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