Pilbara Minerals share price lifts amid 50% quarterly production boost

Why did Pilbara shares rocket more than 6% on Thursday? Let’s take a look.

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Key points

  • The ASX 200 had a successful day of trading today, up just less than 1%
  • But the Pilbara Minerals share price did even better, closing 6% higher
  • The ASX lithium share was gaining even before it dropped its latest quarterly report on Thursday afternoon

It was a pleasing day for the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) on Thursday. The ASX 200 closed at 6,889.7 points, up a healthy 0.97% for the day. But it was an even better day for the Pilbara Minerals Ltd (ASX: PLS) share price.

ASX lithium stock Pilbara ended up finishing this Thursday’s trading at $2.73 a share, up a robust 6.23%. That came after this lithium flagship closed at $2.57 a share yesterday and opened at $2.63 this morning.

What was interesting about Pilbara’s day was the release of the company’s June quarterly activities report. The report, covering the three months to 30 June 2022, was released at 2.56 pm. So it’s fair to say that it didn’t have much of an impact on Pilbara’s stellar day.

It may have been responsible for ticking the company’s share price up from $2.70 to $2.73 (which occurred after the release of the report). But Pilbara had clearly banked much of its daily gains before this time, so go figure.

What did Pilbara Minerals report today?

Even so, it was objectively a pleasing report for the company. Pilbara reported that it had produced 127,236 dry metric tonnes of lithium spodumene concentrate over the June quarter.

That was a substantial 56% increase from the 81,431 tonnes the company reported for the preceding quarter covering the three months to 31 March 2022.

This production included the first concentrate from the company’s Ngungaju Plant.

This has enabled Pilbara to book a total of 377,902 dry metric tonnes of spodumene concentrate for the full 2022 financial year. That was again a 35% increase over the 58,383 tonnes the company recorded for FY 2021.

Spodumene shipments also rose over the quarter, increasing 127% from the 58,383 tonnes for the March quarter to the 132,424 tonnes recorded for the quarter ending 30 June.

Pilbara recorded an average sales price of US$4,267 per dry metric tonne over the June quarter, another rise over the previous quarter, in which Pilbara was only able to achieve an average of US$2,650 per tonne.

In terms of outlook, Pilbara had this to say:

Market demand for battery raw materials remained strong, with Chinese lithium prices stabilising close to all-time highs…

During the June Quarter 2022… Pilbara Minerals… continued to progress work programs and activities to increase spodumene concentrate production at the Pilgangoora Project, in response to surging global demand for lithium raw materials…

So we can’t say that this report was behind the stellar performance of the Pilbara Minerals share price this Thursday. But it certainly didn’t hurt.

At the last Pilbara share price, this ASX 200 lithium stock had a market capitalisation of $7.65 billion.

Motley Fool contributor Sebastian Bowen has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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 no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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