Key drivers:
- Cobalt hydroxide payables were steady in the first half of the week - fresh inquiries were relatively fewer than in late May, but buyers are still finalizing their latest round of spot top-ups. So far, suppliers have refused to compromise and accept lower bids.
- Suppliers indicate they are holding their offers firm for now, even if buyers retreat, citing persistent supply constraints. They are also requesting flexibility on shipment dates as capacities have not entirely resumed to the level seen prior to the 36-day lockdown in South Africa, which started in late March.
- Consumers say they are taking a more cautious approach to restocking, preferring to wait one to two weeks before making fresh inquiries, especially given a slight backswing in cobalt salts prices this week.

Key quotes:
“If I make any lower bids, I won’t be succeeded at the moment anyway. So I just want to wait for one more week. If cobalt salts prices continue to soften, then there are more chances to peg a lower payables.” - a consumer 

“I can only deliver half of the units that I usually delivered ahead of the lockdown. Given fewer materials I can provide now, there is no point surrendering to lower bids or cutting offers even when buyers’ appetites waned.” - a supplier