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May EV Battery Demand and Prices Remain Stable, June Prices Likely to Drop, Says TrendForce

6 June 2024 Energy TrendForce

TrendForce research reveals that after experiencing low capacity utilization in the first quarter, the EV battery industry saw a significant recovery in market demand starting in March. April’s peak season led to a surge in demand, boosting lithium battery production and slightly raising EV battery prices. In May, the market continued its peak season trend with stable demand and prices. Monthly ASP for square ternary, square LFP, and pouch ternary cells were CNY 0.50/Wh, 0.43/Wh, and 0.52/Wh, respectively.

In the ESS sector, May saw a surge in demand for solar energy paired with storage. The Chinese market’s grid-connected storage projects entered the stocking period in May–June, leading to a growth in enterprise orders and slight price increases for some products. The ASP of square LFP cells in May was CNY 0.43/Wh, remaining stable compared to the previous quarter.

TrendForce analysis indicates that ESS cells are transitioning from 280 Ah to 314 Ah. Although 314 Ah ESS cells have not yet been shipped in large quantities, their mass production is expected in the first half of the year. Their market penetration in power-side, grid-side, and commercial energy storage markets is anticipated to gradually increase in the second half of the year, highlighting their advantages in cost-performance.

For the entire quarter, TrendForce reports that Q2 market demand is better than expected, with overall stable prices for EV and ESS cells. However, it is worth noting that the industry chain’s stocking exceeded end-user installation demand during the peak season between April to May, leading to inventory build-up due to overproduction by cell manufacturers. 

TrendForce predicts that the procurement demand for battery materials will decline in June, putting pressure on lithium prices. As a result, the cost support for EV and ESS cell materials will weaken, and cell prices are expected to remain flat or slightly decrease by the end of Q2.

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