Molycorp Inc., owner of the world’s largest non-Chinese deposit of rare-earth metals, rose the most in more than four months after Nikkei English News reported Sumitomo Corp. may buy a stake in the U.S. company.
Molycorp climbed $5.06, or 18 percent, to $32.86 at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading, the biggest gain since the Greenwood Village, Colorado-based company’s initial public offering in July.
Sumitomo, Japan’s third-largest trading company, may agree to buy a stake in Molycorp this week, Nikkei said, without saying where it obtained the information.
Japan, the largest rare-earth importer, has stepped up efforts to diversify supply sources after shipments from China were disrupted in September. China accounts for 97 percent of global supply of rare-earths, used in electric-vehicle batteries, catalysts for refining petroleum, computer disk drives and military radar.
Jim Allen, Molycorp’s chief financial officer, didn’t immediately return a call for comment. No one was immediately available for comment when Bloomberg News called Sumitomo’s headquarters in Tokyo outside of normal business hours.
Rare Element Resources Ltd., a Vancouver-based rare-earth miner, jumped $1.38, or 14 percent, to $11.20 in New York trading.