The Pilbara (ASX:PLS) share price soared 18% in March. Here’s why

This lithium miner has been going gangbusters lately.

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Key points

  • The Pilbara Minerals share price soared 18% in March 
  • The company's shares have exploded nearly 234% in the past year 
  • Pilbara reported news on its lithium growth strategy to finish a stellar month 

The Pilbara Minerals share price had an outstanding month in March.

The lithium miner’s shares soared 18% between market close on 28 February and the close of trade on 31 March. In today’s trading, the Pilbara share price leapt 5.54% to finish at $3.62.

Let’s take a look at what happened during the month.

What’s lifting the Pilbara share price?

Pilbara Minerals is a Western Australian based lithium and tantalum explorer working on its 100% owned Pilgangoora Lithium Tantalum Project.

The Pilbara share price headed north in early March amid optimistic broker coverage. The team at Macquarie rated the Pilbara share price a buy at the time.

Marcus Today senior investment analyst Henry Jennings also recommended Pilbara as a buy in March, as my Foolish colleague Sebastian reported. Jennings said:

After recent falls, the stock is now starting to look attractive and with brokers now upgrading lithium price forecasts, PLS is a buy at around 280c. Having a producer is a bedrock but it is also good to have an explorer with upside potential.

Growth and optimism

On 31 March, Pilbara reported a step forward in its lithium growth strategy. A scoping study provided preliminary support for constructing a demonstration-scale chemicals facility at Pilgangoora. This would produce value-added lithium phosphate salts via an “innovative” refining process. Pilbara shares soared more than 7% on 31 March alone.

As my Foolish colleague James noted, renewed optimism in the shift to electric vehicles may have also favourably impacted the Pilbara share price. Lithium is a critical component in electric vehicle batteries.

In February, Pilbara delivered a statutory profit after tax of $114 million in its FY22 half-year result. The company also reported a record sales revenue of $291.7 million.

Share price snapshot

The Pilbara share price has exploded nearly 234% in the past 12 months, while it has climbed 13% year to date. In the past week, the company’s shares have soared nearly 13%.

For perspective, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) index has returned about 10% over the past year.

Pilbara has a market capitalisation of about $10.8 billion based on the current share price.

The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Macquarie Group Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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