Growing our lithium trading capabilities

Macquarie’s Commodities and Global Markets group has developed a lithium hedging solution, helping corporate clients globally to manage their pricing risk and support the increased use of this critical metal in the global energy transition.

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Sector Commodities, Resources
Sub-sector Metals, Lithium
Location London


There is growing demand for the minerals required to produce essential clean energy technologies like electric vehicles and battery energy storage systems as the global energy transition continues to drive their increased use.

While many banks can trade most of the required metals, including copper, nickel, and increasingly cobalt, the market for lithium derivatives remains relatively nascent, having previously suffered from poor liquidity.

This has restricted banks’ ability to support both consumers and producers of the metal, who found it challenging to manage their pricing risk. This offered a great opportunity for Macquarie to be one of the first to develop a lithium hedging solution.


Macquarie executed its first trade for a lithium consumer client in December 2022.

Since then, the business has been building its capabilities and is trading growing volumes of lithium. It can execute through The Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), Singapore Exchange (SGX) and The London Metal Exchange (LME), for a tenor of up to 24 months, and in both compounds: lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate.

In an effort to continuously widen the offering of risk management tools, Macquarie can provide options on lithium hydroxide and is also one of the few international banks able to offer swaps on onshore Guangzhou Futures Exchange (GFEX) lithium carbonate futures.

As this business expands, it becomes better positioned to support clients with higher volumes and more competitive pricing, as clients’ varying needs create two-way trade flow, allowing Macquarie to effectively manage this risk in-house.


Macquarie’s ability to execute volumes greater than current daily exchange-traded volumes has enabled it to satisfy growing customer interest in de-risking supply chains and establish a strong foothold in the market.

As the business continues to grow, Macquarie hopes to leverage the strength of its mining business and Australia’s status as the world’s largest producer of lithium,1 to further encourage the supply of this critical metal that is essential to the increased electrification of energy use, through swaps, options and financing-related products.

Macquarie has provided metal hedging solutions for 40 years and we are pleased to continue to align our capabilities with our clients’ evolving needs. Macquarie’s ability to offer battery material hedge products, such as lithium, allows our clients to continue to develop their mining assets and supports manufacturers in transitioning their products to lower-carbon alternatives. We look forward to continuing to expand our product offering in this space via our project finance, structured lending and derivative capabilities.”

Ryan Mangan
Executive Director
Macquarie Commodities and Global Markets

1. Lithium, Mineral Commodity Summaries, U.S. Geological Survey, January 2023