Top 9 Battery Metals Stocks on the TSX and TSXV in 2022
What are the top battery metals stocks? Here’s a look at the battery metals companies with the biggest year-to-date gains so far in 2022.
2022 has been a breakout year for many battery metals due to the ever-strengthening electric vehicle market, a topic covered in the Investing News Network's (INN) electric vehicle market update for Q3.
Unsurprisingly, companies focused on these resources are in the limelight, and many are seeing strong year-to-date gains. Below the Investing News Network has gathered the top battery metals stocks on the TSX and TSXV with year-to-date gains, including companies operating in the lithium, cobalt and graphite sectors, with a special mention to nickel.
Only stocks with market caps above C$10 million are included. All data was obtained via TradingView’s stock screener on November 22, 2022, for lithium and November 16, 2022, for nickel and cobalt. No graphite companies on the TSX and TSXV were up year-to-date at the time data was collected. Read on to learn more about the top battery metals stocks of 2022.
Year-to-date gain: 228.57 percent; market cap: C$20.56 million; current share price: C$0.23
Nevada Sunrise Metals, which underwent a name change from Nevada Sunrise Gold in September, wholly owns two lithium projects, the Gemini and Jackson Wash assets, which are located in the Lida Valley basin in Nevada. According to Nevada Sunrise, the Lida Valley basin shares similar geography to the nearby Clayton Valley basin, where Albemarle’s (NYSE:ALB) Silver Peak lithium mine is located. In addition to its lithium properties, the company owns 100 percent of the Coronado VMS project, 20 percent of the Kinsley Mountain gold project and 15 percent of both the Treasure Box copper project and the Lovelock Mine cobalt project.
In Q1, Nevada Sunrise shares saw little movement, even as the firm commenced exploration at Gemini. It wasn’t until the company shared its first drill results on April 18 that its share price broke above C$0.10, jumping from C$0.08 to C$0.14 overnight. Further exploration results at the project, including 1,101 parts per million lithium over 730 feet, continued to drive its share price higher.
After rising through May and early June, the company’s share price hit a H1 high of C$0.36 on June 10 off the back of June 6 exploration results showing 327.7 milligrams of lithium per liter of water over 220 feet, as well as private placement news. In late July, Nevada Sunrise received an exploration permit for Gemini that increased the number of boreholes at the project to 12, six of which were planned for the Phase 2 drilling program at the project. The company’s share price spiked significantly from C$0.22 on August 23 to C$0.38 on August 30, a new year-to-date high for the company, although it did not release news during that time period.
Phase 2 drilling commenced in mid-October and has two objectives: it aims to test the lithium brine and sediments at greater depths compared to its previous exploration and to test the width of the lithium-bearing zone that had been previously identified. Most recently, the company engaged with metallurgical specialist William Duyvesteyn to help develop new lithium extraction processes.
Year-to-date gain: 202.62 percent; market cap: C$3.92 billion; current share price: C$39.34
In Minas Gerais, Brazil, Sigma Lithium has its Grota do Cirilo hard-rock lithium project, where it is currently constructing Phase 1 operations with expected commissioning by the end of the 2022 year. Sigma anticipates Phase 1 production of 270,000 metric tons (MT) annually and Phase 2 production of 531,000 MT. In addition to that, the company is building a greentech dense media separation production plant, which it says will make its operations vertically integrated.
On May 26, Sigma filed a consolidated technical report that looks at two initial production phases for Grota do Cirilo. The integrated operation would source feedstock spodumene ore from the company's Phase 1 and Phase 2 lithium deposits to produce battery-grade, high-purity lithium concentrate. After-tax net production revenue is pegged at US$5.1 billion, while the after-tax internal rate of return is 589 percent; this expansion scenario "will potentially position (Sigma) as the world’s fourth largest lithium producer."
Sigma shared an update on its “transformative” Q2, mentioning the previously announced news that it has increased the resource at Grota do Cirilo by 50 percent; a Phase 3 technical report has now been filed. Additionally, as of the announcement, construction at the project was 32 percent complete. On September 15, the company appointed Dana Perlman as an independent director. Its share price has continued to grow throughout the year, reaching a year-to-date high of C$50.84 on October 27 after starting the year at C$12.21.
Sigma’s price did fall in mid-November back to early October numbers, during which time it released a Q3 update on its construction activities during the period. According to the company, it anticipates its greentech plant to be commissioned in December 2022.
Year-to-date gain: 155.88 percent; market capitalization: C$72.26 million; current share price: C$0.435
Brunswick Exploration is a Quebec-based explorer focused on lithium pegmatite projects. It has a portfolio of 10 exploration projects, with six in Atlantic Canada, three in Quebec and one in Ontario. This large portfolio has largely been built in 2022, as the company has spent much of the year identifying and acquiring projects and land packages.
In June, Brunswick announced it was starting its grassroots lithium exploration program in Eastern Canada. The program is spread out through its many projects, to which prospecting teams have been sent to perform ground prospecting for “spodumene-bearing pegmatites, stream geochemistry and trenching of select targets.”
CEO Killian Charles stated in a press release, “This is the largest grassroots portfolio in our peer group and this initial program will rapidly sort through dozens of identified pegmatites to prepare for trenching and/or diamond drilling programs later this year.”
A recent addition to Brunswick’s portfolio is the Hearst project, its sole Ontario property, which is a combination of the company’s own prospecting and the optioning of an adjacent spodumene-bearing pegmatite. The company’s share price has climbed throughout the year, reaching a peak of C$0.42 on September 7.
On November 10, Brunswick optioned a property that has the potential for lithium-cesium-tantalum mineralization. The deal would allow it to acquire up to 85 percent of the Mythril and Elrond projects from Midland Exploration (TSXV:MD). The properties are located in the James Bay region of Quebec.
Year-to-date gain: 17.07 percent; market cap: C$198.64 million; current share price: C$0.48
Sherritt International is a miner, producer and refiner of high-purity nickel and cobalt. While nickel is its primary focus, it is still a significant producer of cobalt, and believes both metals are essential to the electric vehicle revolution. The company operates a mine in Cuba, as well as a refinery in Alberta, Canada, both of which are part of its 50/50 Moa joint venture with Cuba’s General Nickel Company. The vertically integrated joint venture has a capacity of 35,000 MT of nickel and 3,800 MT of cobalt produced per year.
In February, Sherritt released its 2021 production results and 2022 guidance. It expects to see cobalt production in 2022 in line with its 2021 numbers, and has set guidance of 3,400 to 3,700 MT compared to 2021’s production of 3,526 MT. On March 1, the company announced the appointment of decarbonization expert Chih-Ting Lo to its board of directors, and also named Maryse Bélanger as deputy chair. The focus of these changes is to strengthen Sherritt's commitment to ESG matters.
As a nickel-primary company, Sherritt’s share price has seen movement that reflects nickel hitting an all-time-high. Its share price shot up to reach a high of C$0.82 on March 10, but began moving back down in mid-May and has yet to see those heights again in 2022.
In July, the company released its Q2 results, which it said were driven by higher nickel, cobalt and fertilizer prices. Its Q3 results came in late October, and showed that its portion of finished cobalt production from the Moa joint venture was 419 MT, marginally lower year-over-year, which the company attributes to the mixed sulfides from Moa having a higher nickel-to-cobalt ratio. As part of the results, the company also shared that its board of directors has approved US$50 million for an expansion for Moa.
Year-to-date gain: 16.57 percent; market cap: C$412.99 million; current share price: C$4.08
PolyMet Mining’s flagship project is its NorthMet copper-nickel project, which is also expected to produce cobalt and precious metals. NorthMet is located in Minnesota, US, in the Duluth Complex, and has proven and probable reserves of 290 million MT grading 0.288 percent copper and 0.083 percent nickel. The company is working to secure permits that will allow it to begin mining.
Although PolyMet’s share price performed relatively flatly for the early part of the year, it saw a spike from C$3.74 on March 7 to C$5.06 the following day; the company released no news to accompany this rise. PolyMet fell back down to the C$4 to C$4.50 range in the following weeks, during which time it shared its 2021 financial results and a Q1 business update.
Shares did experience another jump, hitting a year-to-date high of C$5.17, this time following the March 29 news that Senior Vice President Richard Lock was moving on. PolyMet’s share price fell through the second quarter.
On July 20, PolyMet announced the significant news that it was creating a 50/50 joint venture with Teck Resources (TSX:TECK.A,TSX:TECK.B,NYSE:TECK) subsidiary Teck American. The companies' respective NorthMet and Mesaba projects will be under a single management team, an entity named NewRange Copper Nickel. According to a press release, the projects “represent two of the largest undeveloped clean energy mineral resources in the U.S.”
On November 10, the company released its Q3 results. In the release, it updated shareholders on its progress towards closing the Teck joint venture, as well as ongoing litigation.
Year-to-date gain: 4.76 percent; market cap: C$12.25 million; current share price: C$0.22
Exploration company DLP Resources is focused on base metals and cobalt projects in Southeast BC. It has two wholly owned cobalt projects, the Hungry Creek copper-cobalt-silver project and the Redburn Creek copper-cobalt project. The company also has the Aurora porphyry copper-molybdenum project in Peru.
DLP Resources started the year by appointing a new CEO, the company’s president Ian Gendall. Gendall retained the president position, and the previous CEO, Jim Stypula, became executive chairman. Much of the company’s 2022 exploration has been focused on its non-cobalt projects. However, on July 28, DLP Resources announced the commencement of drilling at Hungry Creek, with 1,800 meters over six holes planned. As part of an exploration update in mid-September, DLP Resources shared that the drilling was complete and the company was awaiting results.
The company’s share price has largely hovered between C$0.20 and C$0.25 in 2022, and saw a year-to-date high of C$0.26 on September 26. On October 4, DLP announced the results from its AGM, at which all matters were approved, as well as a C$2 million non-brokered private placement offering. The proceeds from the offering will go towards further exploration at Aurora after the company got its first results from the project in late September.
As of the time of publication, no graphite stocks were up year to date.
Year-to-date gain: 71.43 percent; market cap: C$20.71 million; current share price: C$0.18
Grid Metals is a nickel explorer and developer working out of Canada’s Manitoba and Ontario provinces. The company holds a portfolio of five projects that all tie into its goal of targeting the battery metals industry. Grid’s flagship project is its Makwa Mayville nickel-copper project, which also hosts platinum-group metals (PGMs) and cobalt mineralization. Near Makwa Mayville is Grid’s Mayville lithium property. The company is also exploring the Donner Lake lithium project and the Campus Creek lithium property. In addition to these, the company owned the Bannockburn nickel property until recently.
The company’s share price rose with nickel to hit a year-to-date high of C$0.23 on March 10. On March 11, Grid Metals released drill results from its Bannockburn nickel property; the best result was 341.7 meters averaging 0.28 percent nickel. In May, the company released the results from 14 drill holes completed at Makwa Mayville.
On June 7, Grid Metals and Canada Nickel Company (TSXV:CNC,OTCQX:CNIKF) announced that Grid would be selling Bannockburn to the latter company. In return, Grid Metals would receive 2 million Canada Nickel common shares. The company has since continued its exploration at Donner Lake, sharing drill results and a project update in late July. On August 22, Grid Metals announced a strategic financing with the goal of raising up to C$8.52 million, which the company completed on September 26. Grid Metals intends to use the proceeds for exploration, and said its focus will be its Makwa Mayville, Donner Lake and Campus Creek projects.
Grid Metals' Q4 news has focused on its lithium projects. In October, it signed a memorandum of understanding with Tantalum Mining, which will perform tests on Grid’s lithium spodumene ore at the Tanco mine. If this is successful, the companies intend to enter into a binding agreement to “split the costs and profits of mining, processing and selling lithium spodumene concentrate to the global market.” On November 9, the company commenced further drilling at Donner Lake.
Year-to-date gain: 28.57 percent; market cap: C$36.59 million; current share price: C$0.54
Magna Mining is advancing its flagship Shakespeare nickel-copper-PGMs project near Sudbury, Ontario, and the nearby Denison project, which includes the Crean Hill past-producing nickel-copper-PGMs mine. It has a permit to build a mine at Shakespeare.
Magna Mining completed a drill program at Shakespeare earlier this year and shared the results from it in October. The assays include the “highest-grade intersection of combined platinum, palladium and gold to date on the Shakespeare project.” That specific assay showed 15.5 grams per MT (g/t) platinum, 1.46 g/t palladium and 1.31 g/t gold over 0.35 meters.
On November 7, Magna Mining announced the closure of its acquisition of Lonmin Canada, which owns the Denison project, including the Crean Hill past-producing mine on the site. The next day, Magna released the mineral resource estimate for Denison, which includes an indicated resource of 500 million pounds of contained nickel. These news items shot the company’s share price up, moving from C$0.36 on November 7 to C$0.48 overnight. It continued to climb to a year-to-date high of C$0.55 on November 11.
On November 17, Magna began a drill program at the Crean Hill site. According to the company, three holes were previously drilled there, with one intersecting massive sulfide mineralization.
Year-to-date gain: 17.07 percent; market cap: C$198.64 million; current share price: C$0.48
Sherritt International is a miner, producer and refiner of high-purity nickel and cobalt, and its primary focus is nickel. The company operates a mine in Cuba and a refinery in Alberta, Canada, both of which are part of its 50/50 Moa joint venture with Cuba’s General Nickel Company. The vertically integrated operation can produce 35,000 MT of nickel and 3,800 MT of cobalt per year.
In February, Sherritt released its 2021 production results and 2022 guidance. Among other details, the company revealed it expects a production increase for nickel, from 31,184 MT in 2021 to guidance of 32,000 to 34,000 MT for this year.
On March 1, the company announced the appointment of decarbonization expert Chih-Ting Lo to its board of directors, and also named Maryse Bélanger as deputy chair. The focus of these changes is to strengthen Sherritt's commitment to ESG matters.
As it’s a nickel-primary company, Sherritt’s share price has seen movement that reflects nickel hitting an all-time-high. Its share price shot up to reach a high of C$0.82 on March 10, but began moving back down in mid-May; it has yet to see those heights again in 2022.
In July, the company released its Q2 results, which it said were driven by higher nickel, cobalt and fertilizer prices. Its Q3 results came in late October, and showed that its portion of finished nickel production from the Moa joint venture was 4,443 MT, with production year-to-date up 6 percent compared to the same period in 2021. As part of the results, the company also shared that its board of directors has approved US$50 million for the Moa expansion.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Lauren Kelly, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Editorial Disclosure: Canada Nickel Company, Brunswick Exploration and Nevada Sunrise Metals are clients of the Investing News Network. This article is not paid-for content.
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