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 September 03, 2014
Jinchuan Will Cut Cobalt Metal Supply to Half in September
    Publisher: MetalBulletin

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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MetalBulletin.com - September 2, 2014 - London

Excerpt from the MetalBulletin Article

Jinchuan Will Cut Cobalt Metal Supply to Half in September

China's Jinchuan Group will cut its cobalt metal supply to the market by half in September to conduct maintenance works, with the move expected to boost the minor metal's prices.

"We can only supply 200 tonnes of cobalt metal in total this month, excluding exports, and only about 120-140 tonnes can be supplied to the domestic market," a company official said..."We won't be able to satisfy all the buyers," he said, adding, "It is even likely for us to lift prices for the month."

To read more, Sign up for a Free Trial Metal Bulletin Membership or follow on Twitter @metalbulletin

 
 September 02, 2014
SPOTLIGHT ON EBOLA: African Border Controls on Copper and Cobalt
    Publisher: MetalBulletin
    Author: Fleur Ritzema

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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MetalBulletin.com - September 2, 2014 - London

Excerpt from the MetalBulletin Article

SPOTLIGHT ON EBOLA: African Border Controls on Copper and Cobalt

Border controls, the result of Ebola in the DRC, are beginning to affect the metals markets.

Botswana's government has banned anybody from the DRC entering its country. Other countries' authorities have introduced driver health checks at border crossings, and imposed restrictions on their future movements.

Why does it matter?

The DRC is the world's biggest cobalt producer and the sixth biggest copper producer. The country is expected to produce more than 900,000 tonnes of mined copper in 2014, according to Metal Bulletin Research analysts.

Total mined cobalt production in the DRC grew to an estimated 51,500 tonnes in 2013, up 9% from 2012 and this raw material contributes to 61% of global refined cobalt supply, according to UK-based cobalt trading house Darton Commodities.

The restrictions on driver movements could slow the arrival of copper and cobalt to the market...The scale of any longer-term impact will depend on whether Ebola spreads further. Further cases of the virus within the DRC could prompt further border restrictions. Any potential restriction on the DRC/Zambia border would be particularly worrying, as practically all of the DRC's copper and cobalt crosses this border...

To read more, Sign up for a Free Trial Metal Bulletin Membership or follow on Twitter @metalbulletin

 
 August 28, 2014
Cobalt Market on Alert After Reports of Blocked Border Due to Ebola
    Publisher: MetalBulletin
    Author: Fleur Ritzema

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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MetalBulletin.com - August 28, 2014 - London

Cobalt Market on Alert After Reports of Blocked Border Due to Ebola

Concern is growing in the cobalt market that African border controls, as a result of the spread of Ebola, may restrict movement of some cobalt and copper coming from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Excerpt from the August 28, 2014 MetalBulletin Article

Border issues have been reported on at least one route that is used by copper and cobalt transporters from the DRC. "This is definitely happening on the Botswana/Zambia border," a source active in the region said. "I hear trucks have been backed up since Monday," a second cobalt source said. A memorandum, seen by Metal Bulletin, sent out by the Botswanan government to immigration officials on August 25 stated that in order to safeguard its citizens, all borders and airports are instructed not to allow anybody from the DRC to enter the country. More than 80 trucks heading to South Africa from the DRC, the world's largest cobalt producer, are reportedly stranded on the Zambian side of the Kazungula border crossing to Botswana. This, according to local media, is because the Botswanan authorities are not allowing them to enter due to fears about the Ebola virus...

To read more, Sign up for a Free Trial Metal Bulletin Membership or follow on Twitter @metalbulletin











http://bit.ly/1zMZBjA

 
 August 27, 2014
Umicore Livens Up Cobalt Space with Acquisition and Partnership
    Publisher: Cobalt Investing News
    Author: Charlotte Mcleod

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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Umicore Livens Up Cobalt Space with Acquisition and Partnership

The cobalt space has been fairly quiet this past month, with few companies releasing news. But breaking up the monotony earlier this week was Belgian materials technology and recycling firm Umicore, which announced two interesting transactions on Monday.

First, the company said it has acquired Ohio's CP Chemicals and will be integrating the business into its Cobalt & Specialty Materials business unit. CP refines secondary materials containing cobalt and nickel, transforming them into "chemicals for the catalyst and petrochemical refining industries." It also recycles rhenium from superalloy turbine blades.

Umicore believes the deal will allow it "to establish new cobalt and nickel recycling capabilities in North America," a move that fits with its "strategy to strengthen its position along the cobalt and nickel value chain, from recycling and to transformation and distribution."

Second, Umicore announced a long-term agreement under which it will recycle cobalt-containing hard metals scrap from Global Tungsten and Powders, then supply the company with cobalt fine powders. According to Jan Vliegen, senior vice president of Umicore's Cobalt & Specialty Materials business unit, that transaction is also part of the company's plan to grow its position in North America.

Vliegen said, "together with the recent acquisition of Palm Commodities this confirms our ambition to further strengthen our North American presence. It also underlines Umicore's commitment to contribute to the recycling of scrap in the hard metals industry." Global Tungsten & Powders states in a press release that it anticipates "finalizing this transition" in mid-2015.

Price Update

Though cobalt companies put out little news in August, the metal's price activity has been comparatively exciting, with both low- and high-grade cobalt prices reaching their highest level in 29 months at the end of July. As Metal Bulletin reported, low-grade material was trading between $14.45 and $15.50 per pound, while high-grade material was moving between $15 and $15.50.

That's pretty impressive, but what's perhaps even more significant is the fact that prices have managed to stay at roughly those levels since then. Most recently, Metal Bulletin pegged high-grade cobalt prices as sitting at $14.90 to $15.90, noting that low-grade prices are stable.

The news fits in with comments made last month by Erin Chutter, president and CEO of Global Cobalt (TSXV:GCO,OTCBB:GLBCF). She emphasized during a company conference call that cobalt prices have been seeing a "sure, steady increase" over the last 18 to 24 months and noted that "we're getting very, very close to market equilibrium." The next step, of course, will be "market deficit."

It's also in line with CRU's recent Cobalt Market Outlook, published last month. In it, senior consultant Panos Kotseras states, like Chutter, that while the cobalt market has been plagued by oversupply for the past three years or so, "the market may now be turning a corner."

Though he notes that demand is "subject to significant risks" and points out that China's role in the market can be tough to determine, Kotseras also notes that a variety of factors --- including the uptrend in cobalt prices, the nickel price rally and "the prospect of a booming Electric Vehicle market" --- support the idea that the tide is indeed about to turn.

Cobalt market watchers would thus do well to keep a close eye on prices and not be discouraged by this month's slow news flow. It appears the best is yet to come.

To read the full article please click here to visit CobaltInvestingNews.com

 
 August 20, 2014
High-grade cobalt prices dip; low-grade cobalt prices stable
    Publisher: MetalBulletin
    Author: Fleur Ritzema

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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MetalBulletin.com - August 20, 2014 - London

High-grade cobalt prices dip; low-grade cobalt prices stable

High-grade cobalt prices fell this week, after a drop in consumer enquiries led to some sellers reducing offer prices in August.


Excerpt from the August 20, 2014 MetalBulletin Article

High-grade cobalt prices fell to $14.90-15.90 per lb, while low-grade cobalt prices remained at $14.45-15.45...It's a real summer lull - but it's what you'd expect. Nickel is shocking too. There are hardly any consumers around," a trader said. Others argued that the lack of significant price falls over the summer was a bullish signal for cobalt as it could lead to price rises in September. "The market was well supported over the summer. It came off a bit, but it didn't collapse, and there is interest now," a second trader said....

To read more, Sign up for a Free Trial Metal Bulletin Membership or follow on Twitter @metalbulletin

 
 August 13, 2014
The Cobalt Market is at a Turning Point
    Publisher: CRU
    Author: Panos Kotseras

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
- FOR THE INFORMATION OF SHAREHOLDERS AND INTERESTED PARTIES ONLY -

As per the Company's July 9, 2014 News Release with respect to the recent developments in the Electric Vehicle Battery Sector, the CRU has released a 4 page Insight piece on the cobalt market. The CRU believes the cobalt market has turned a corner and will cycle on a positive trend in the coming years.The synopsis is from their new Cobalt Market Outlook, which provides a comprehensive examination of the global cobalt industry through the next 10 years. The report states that after 4 years of weakening fundamentals and falling prices, the market is turning a corner. CRU Senior Consultant Panos Kotseras writes "production is being affected by integration, changes of ownership, and changes in the type and volume of units available to 3rd-party processors. Demand prospects look strong provided that high-tech applications will continue to use cobalt."

An excerpt from the report:

The Cobalt market is at a turning point

Oversupply of by-product cobalt units has been putting negative pressure on prices for more than three years but the market may now be turning a corner. There is an improvement in market sentiment across the board: cobalt prices have been trending up since the beginning of the year; the nickel price rally has favoured nickel-cobalt producers; demand from rechargeable batteries used in consumer electronics continues to be robust; the prospect of a booming Electric Vehicle market generates further upside demand potential...

To read the full 4 page synopsis click on image below...

About CRU

CRU was founded in 1969 and was originally named Commodities Research Unit. The name was changed to CRU as the company expanded to offering more than just research. the CRU is an independent authority on the global mining, metals and fertilizer industries.

 
 August 12, 2014
Tesla Motors Updates Supercharger Network Progress
    Publisher: Seeking Alpha - Breaking News

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
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* Tesla Motors has updated its global Supercharger coverage map.

* The automaker says it has 54 stations in Europe, 105 in North America and 9 in Asia

* Coast to coast travel via Tesla's charging network will be available to 98% of the U.S. population by 2015.

View the Supercharger coverage interactive map on Tesla Motors, Inc. website

 
 August 11, 2014
Congolese devastate own homes in cobalt mining rush
    Publisher: FRANCE 24 Observers
    Author: Alexandre Capron

 
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The Observers - August 11, 2014

Congolese devastate own homes in cobalt mining rush

Hundreds of artisanal miners have flooded a neighbourhood of Kolwezi in the southern Democratic Republic of Congo, after the discovery of a giant cobalt deposit. Our Observer explains how too much mining has effectively turned the ground into Swiss cheese -- putting the whole neighborhood at risk. Kolwezi is a town renowned for its rich soil, home to vast quantities of mineral deposits containing aluminium, copper and especially cobalt. These minerals -- keenly sought after and exploited by artisanal miners [miners who work independently] -- are dug up and then sold on to mining companies in the region, many of which are Chinese.

In June, a resident of Kasulo -- which is located around four kilometres from the town centre of Kolwezi -- was building a septic tank in his home when he realised that his basement was overflowing with mineral deposits. Other local residents then began searching and discovered that the surrounding area was loaded with copper and cobalt. Despite a mining prohibition put in place by the municipality on July 18th, giant holes suddenly began appearing across the neighborhood. Left without some kind of supporting structure, these excavations are prone to collapse. Five diggers died at the end of July in landslides caused by haphazard excavation sites.

"No one has the intention of leaving the area as long as there's still an ounce of cobalt or copper"

Almost all the residents of Kasulo [a neighborhood of around 10,000 people] dug on their land to try and find minerals. It's a poor area, where the unemployment rate is extremely high, so this discovery was almost like a gift from the heavens for lots of them. The price of minerals varies according to the cobalt trader, but one ton can bring between 1,000 and 5,000 dollars [between 750 and 3,700 euros]. Some haven't hesitated to break down their homes with axes to dig massive holes. Others dig in their rooms away from prying eyes. Most of them have hired artisanal diggers with whom they share up to 50% of the bounty that they find daily. In general, they're recruited in teams of five, and they take it in turns to work different shifts. One team will work from 6am until 6pm, then another takes over. As a result, in the best of cases they can extract between one and two tons daily!

"A pastor and his followers even dug around an inside a church!"

One must dig at least six metres under the ground to find traces of the minerals. The particularity of these minerals is that the deeper you dig, the denser the cobalt and copper. The consequence is that we see huge holes, some that go some 15 metres deep. In a neighborhood church, the pastor and his followers agreed to dig holes around, and even inside, the church to find cobalt. On Sunday, they celebrate mass as if nothing had happened.

Erosion risks triggering landslides and destroying the homes that are still standing.

Residents haven't hesitated to bring down parts of their homes to excavate the ground. The town council at first tolerated the excavations, then decided to intervene because some people began digging on roads. The problem is that these strips of land were legally bought by residents on the local land register. They therefore have the right to do what they want, because they're at home! The government of Katanga has given the diggers one month to leave the area and promised to find them a new place to continue their activities. But on the ground, very few people are aware of the measure, and no one has the intention of leaving the area as long as there's still one ounce of cobalt or copper. Even if they're in the minority, some residents -- often those who haven't found cobalt on their strip of land -- complain about the probable consequences of these anarchic excavations. The rainy season will soon arrive [from October until December], and with soil erosion, we don't have any idea how the soil -- which is very sandy -- will react. There's a strong likelihood of landslides which could destroy the last houses still standing. Let's not even speak about the radioactivity of the minerals, which could pose public health problems in the years to come.

According to the Chamber of Mines of the DR Congo, between 2.5 and 3.5 million tons of cobalt are buried in mineral deposits across the country. That represents between 60 to 75 per cent of world reserves. The resources attract miners who operate illegally: last June, police had to resort to drawing weapons to settle a dispute between miners in Kawama, south of Kolwezi.

This article was written with Alexandre Capron, (@alexcapron), journalist for the FRANCE 24 Observers.

(To Read the full article and watch video, please click here).
 
 July 31, 2014
Reno Is Tesla's First Choice As A Gigafactory Site
    Publisher: Forbes
    Author: Micheline Maynard

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
- FOR THE INFORMATION OF SHAREHOLDERS AND INTERESTED PARTIES ONLY -




Forbes - July 31, 2014

Reno Is Tesla's First Choice As A Gigafactory Site

Tesla Motors Tesla Motors made it official on Thursday: it has broken ground outside Reno, Nevada, for the first potential site of its $5 billion gigafactory plant.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk disclosed the location in a letter to shareholders that accompanied Tesla's second-quarter results. It has long been rumored that Reno stood the best chance of becoming a gigafactory semi-finalist. And in fact, Musk said that Tesla actually broke ground at the Reno location last month.

(To Read the full article please click here).
 
 July 29, 2014
Cobalt Prices Hit 29 Month Highs
    Publisher: MetalBulletin
    Author: Fleur Ritzema

 
THIS IS NOT AN OFFICIAL COMPANY NEWS RELEASE
- FOR THE INFORMATION OF SHAREHOLDERS AND INTERESTED PARTIES ONLY -




MetalBulletin.com - July 28, 2014 - London

Cobalt Prices Hit 29 Month Highs

Cobalt sellers have been celebrating signing numerous spot deals above $15 per lb for the first time in years.

Low-grade prices reached their highest level in 29 months on Friday July 25, and holders of stock in Asia and Europe have been encouraged to sell by the recent rally. Low-grade cobalt reached $14.45-15.25 per lb on Friday, up from $14.25-15.05 on Wednesday July 23.

High-grade cobalt stabilized at Wednesday's 29-month high of $15-15.50 per lb. London Metal Exchange cash cobalt settled at $32,250-33,250 per tonne ($14.63-15.08 per lb) during official trading on Friday, its highest ask price since January 2012.

Several producers are well sold, having either offloaded ahead of the traditionally slower summer months of July and August, or due to production issues. "We're sold out, but we'd be $15 or above if we had anything," one producer said.

Traders, however, many of whom had picked up material in May and June, were happy sellers last week, with several large volume sales transacted. "I've sold over $15 for the first time in two years, and it was 99.3% product. I was really delighted," a trader said....

To read more, Sign up for a Free Trial Metal Bulletin Membership or follow on Twitter @metalbulletin

 
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