Proposal to increase publication frequency of nickel sulfate prices cif China, Japan and Korea

Fastmarkets invites feedback on a proposal to change the publication frequency of nickel sulfate prices cif China, Japan and Korea from monthly to weekly.

Specifications for the prices launched on April 1, 2021, are as follows:

MB-NI-0246 Nickel sulfate, cif China, Japan and South Korea, $/tonne
Quality: Accepted by buyer for use in battery applications with chemical composition: Ni content, base 22.3% max, min 22%, cobalt 50ppm max
Quantity: Min 1 tonne
Location: cif major ports China, Japan, Korea (other ports normalized)
Timing: Within 60 days
Unit: USD/tonne
Publication: Monthly, first working day of each month, 4pm London time

MB-NI-0247 Nickel sulfate premium, cif China, Japan and South Korea, $/tonne
Quality: Accepted by buyer for use in battery applications with chemical composition: Ni content, base 22.3% max, min 22%, cobalt 50ppm max
Quantity: Min 1 tonne
Location: cif major ports China, Japan, and Korea, on top of monthly average LME nickel cash price
Timing: Within 60 days
Unit: USD/tonne Publication: Monthly, first working day of each month, 4pm London time

The current monthly price for nickel sulfate cif China, Japan and Korea is based on the midpoint of the London Metal Exchange cash monthly average price for nickel, with a premium added to reflect the combined cost of raw materials, processing fees, and a freight element. The sum of the underlying price plus premium is multiplied by 22.3%, representing the maximum nickel content in the specification, to arrive at the all-in price for nickel sulfate. The assessed premium element is published as a stand-alone reference price.

Fastmarkets proposes to change publication to weekly on Friday at 4pm London time, and to switch to using a weekly average LME cash price based on the close of business on Friday of the previous week to the close of business on Thursday, the day before publication.

Fastmarkets invites feedback on whether the prior month average would be the preferred basis for the weekly price published on each Friday of the following month.

Simultaneously, Fastmarkets invites comment on the existing specifications, particularly whether maximum limits on copper, iron and other impurities should be introduced, and the existing cobalt content increased to reflect more closely a higher tolerance in battery grade nickel sulfate against plating grade.

Feedback on other elements of the existing specifications including quantity and timing is welcome.

This consultation will run from Monday 22 August until Monday 19 September. Depending on feedback, the first weekly price will be published on Friday September 30 and on each subsequent Friday. No monthly price will be published on Monday October 3.

To provide feedback on this proposal, please contact Callum Perry by email at pricing@fastmarkets.com. Please add the subject heading ‘FAO: Callum Perry/Juliet Walsh re nickel sulfate cif China, Japan and Korea.’

To see all Fastmarkets’ pricing methodology and specification documents go to https://www.fastmarkets.com/about-us/methodology.

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