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Which ASX-listed nickel companies are up the most so far in 2023, and what have they been up to this year? Find the answers here.
With its diverse applications in both technology and industry, nickel is a metal that will never go out of style.
Nickel is commonly used in alloys to create stainless steel, but more recently has found a modern use: batteries. With the rising trend toward electric vehicles, the base metal is in high demand for its role in the production of lithium-ion batteries.
Nickel prices have encountered much volatility in the past few years. They spiked abruptly to surpass the US$100,000 per tonne point in March 2022, prompting the suspension of trading on the London Metal Exchange. However, nickel trading soon resumed, and prices fell back to a normal range over the following months, nearing the US$20,000 mark by July of last year.
China ending its zero-COVID policy gave the base metal a boost to the US$30,000 level as 2023 came into frame. However, global economic uncertainties have placed downward pressure on demand, sending nickel to the US$20,000 mark in Q2.
Against that backdrop, the Investing News Network has listed the top nickel stocks on the ASX by year-to-date gains. Data for this list was gathered using TradingView's stock screener on July 17, 2023, and all companies had market caps above AU$10 million at that time. Read on to learn more about the top ASX nickel stocks.
1. Ragnar Metals
Year-to-date gain: 84.62 percent; market cap: AU$11.37 million; current share price: AU$0.024
Ragnar Metals (ASX:RAG) is building a portfolio of prospective nickel, copper and gold assets across Sweden. Its main focus is its Granmuren nickel prospect, a greenfield discovery that also includes copper and cobalt in “Voisey's Bay style mineralization."
In February, Ragnar announced the identification of three new targets via downhole induced polarisation and resistivity surveys, as well as downhole transient electromagnetic surveys. “We are very excited about the new target areas defined by these new cutting-edge downhole geophysics technologies that provide evidence the Granmuren nickel-copper-cobalt system continues to expand in several directions at depth,” Ragnar Metals Executive Director Eddie King said.
2. Leeuwin Metals
Year-to-date gain: 71.74 percent; market cap: AU$17.47 million; current share price: AU$0.395
A relatively new addition to the ASX, Leeuwin Metals (ASX:LM1) is targeting critical metals that are necessary for the electric vehicle and renewable energy markets, such as nickel, copper and lithium. Its assets include five projects across Canada and Western Australia. Leeuwin’s flagship project is the William Lake nickel sulphide project, located in Manitoba’s Thompson nickel belt.
This year's 5,000 metre maiden drill program at William Lake is targeting high-grade nickel sulphide mineralisation that was previously identified over more than 2 kilometres of strike at the W56 prospect. In July, Leeuwin reported multiple significant nickel sulphide hits, including a 1.4 metre massive to semi-massive sulphide zone with spot readings of 5 percent nickel within a 24 metre zone of disseminated nickeliferous sulphides from 227.2 metres.
3. Nordic Nickel
Year-to-date gain: 28.21 percent; market cap: AU$14.62 million; current share price: AU$0.25
Nordic Nickel (ASX:NNL) is working to become a major supplier of sustainably sourced battery-grade nickel.
The company has a portfolio of prospective projects in Finland’s Central Lapland greenstone belt, including its wholly owned flagship Pulju project, which has a JORC-compliant resource estimate of 133.6 million tonnes, including 278,520 tonnes of nickel and 12,650 tonnes of cobalt. In May, Nordic Nickel published assays from recent drill work confirming an extensive nickel sulphide system at Pulju.
4. Adavale Resources
Year-to-date gain: 16.67 percent; market cap: AU$10.98 million; current share price: AU$0.021`
Adavale Resources (ASX:ADD) is an explorer and developer that owns 100 percent of the Kabanga Jirani nickel project, as well as two farm-in licences (Luhuma) in Tanzania's East African Nickel Belt. The company claims that its nickel project portfolio is "adjacent and along strike from the world’s largest undeveloped high-grade Kabanga nickel sulphide deposit."
Adavale recently confirmed massive nickel sulphides as part of a campaign currently underway at the Luhuma Central prospect. “These results are extremely encouraging as we continue to drill and seek to unlock the strike potential of this mineralisation, based on our extensive AMT, soil and EM datasets covering this area," said Adavale Executive Director David Riekie.
5. Lunnon Metals
Year-to-date gain: 3.91 percent; market cap: AU$189.58 million; current share price: AU$0.93
Exploration company Lunnon Metals (ASX:LM8) owns what it describes as a prospective nickel-gold project in Western Australia's Kambalda nickel district, which has produced more than 1.6 million tonnes of nickel since its discovery in 1966.
Lunnon completed a preliminary feasibility study for its Baker project in May, including an initial probable ore reserve for the deposit of 612,000 tonnes at 2.86 percent nickel for 17,500 contained nickel tonnes.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Melissa Pistilli, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Editorial Disclosure: Nordic Nickel is a client of the Investing News Network. This article is not paid-for content.
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