5 of the top ASX-listed rare earth stocks to watch
Rare earth metals could see increased demand, as concerns over climate change drive increased use of electric vehicles and renewable energy.
What are rare earth metals?
As a resource-rich economy that is host to some of the world's leading mining companies, Australia's stock market provides investors with ample opportunities to gain exposure to rare-earth metals.
Rare-earth metals are a set of heavy metals that play a critical role in modern industry, primarily due to their diverse applications in areas including high-performance magnets, alloys, electronics and glass.
They've attracted the moniker of 'rare-earth' because of their diffuse presence in the earth's crust, leading to the relative scarcity of ore deposits considered economically exploitable.
The comparative scarcity of rare-earth metals in combination with their importance to modern industry makes them resources of tremendous strategic and economic importance.
Demand for rare-earth metals is likely to rise in future, particularly due to the increasing uptake of electric vehicles and renewable energy, as both consumers and government authorities become increasingly concerned about climate change and adopt measures to reduce fossil-fuel emissions.
A range of rare-earth metals play an important role in the motors of electric vehicles and wind turbines, chief amongst them neodymium, which is a powerful magnet that is also employed in speakers and hard drives.
Other rare-earth metals that are commonly used in electric devices include dysprosium, terbium and praseodymium.
Australia's rare earth miners could be well-positioned to reap the benefits of this growing demand for clean energy vehicles and other electric devices. The country is host to some of the world's richest deposits of rare-earth metals, with 3.4% of global resources. This has helped to transform Australia into the world's fourth-largest producer of rare-earth metals, putting it in a solid position to capitalise upon the increased adoption of clean energy.
Five ASX-listed rare earth stocks to watch
Here are five of the top rare-earth metal plays on the ASX, for those investors hoping to gain exposure to these critical resources.
Lynas Rare Earth (ASX: LYC)
Lynas Rare Earths Limited is one of the world's leading producers of rare-earth metals, billing itself as the only significant producer of separate rare-earth materials outside of China.
Its Lynas Mt Weld Mine in Western Australia is considered one of the world's leading deposits of rare-earth metals, while its Malaysian processing plant is the world's largest in the sector.
The company's products include neodymium, praseodymium, lanthanum and cerium, with export markets including renewable energy, electronics and electric sectors in the US, Europe and Asia.
It is currently forging ahead with the construction of processing facilities in Texas in the US, as well as in Kalgoorlie in Western Australia.
Hastings Technology (ASX: HAS)
Hastings Technology Metals Limited is the owner of the Yangibana Rare Earth Project, situated 250 kilometre north-east of Carnarvon in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia.
The company bills it as a world-class rare earth project, with one of the world's most highly valued NdPr deposits – a critical component in the manufacture of permanent magnets.
Given its initial mine life of 17 years, Yangibana is expected to become a globally significant producer of NdPr.
While HAS posted a loss of AU$11 million for the most recent financial year, industry analysts from Simply Wall Street expect the company to be on the verge of achieving a breakeven performance.
They expect a final loss in 2025, before posting profits of $29 million in 2026.
Lindian Resources Ltd (ASX: LIN)
Lindian Resources Limited's Kangankunde Rare Earths Project in Malawi is the compay's flagship asset, and is categorised as a globally significant rare earth resource in terms of size, grade and quality.
At the end of July, LIN announced that the initial deep diamond drill hole at its phase two program for the Kangankunde project had struck an 'astonishing' 854 metres of mineralisation grading at 2.73% total earth oxides.
'The assay results from this drill hole are stunning and confirm that Kangankunde's mineralisation extends at least 850 metres vertically,' CEO Alistair Stephens said in a statement.
'The consistency of mineralisaiton is astonishing.'
Lanthanein Resources (ASX: LNR)
LNR-AU focuses specifically on rare earth exploration, with a corporate mission of supplying raw materials to renewable energy sectors that can reduce carbon emissions and improve sustainability.
Its projects are concentrated in the tier-1 mining jurisdictions of Western Australia and South Australia, including the Gascoyne neodymium and praseodymium project, and the Murraydium project in the Murray Basin, adjacent to Australian Rare Earth's Koppamurra project.
Northern Minerals (ASX: NTU)
Northern Minerals Ltd's main projects include Browns Range, situated 160 kilometres to the south-east of Halls Creek in the north of Western Australia, and Boulder Ridge, situated in the Tanami region of the Northern Territory.
According to NTU, Browns Range has the potential to become the first major producer of dysprosium situated outside of China.
NTU may have recently emerged as a coveted acquisition for cash-flush Chinese investors. The company is reportedly the object of a covert takeover attempt by China's Yuxiao fund, prompting it to request assistance from the Foreign Investment Review Board.
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