Orocobre's 66.5%-owned Olaroz operation in Argentina achieved production and sales of 2352t and 3393t respectively in the September quarter, with the average realised price of US$3103/t (FOB) a long way short of cash costs of just over $4000/t - including an export tax of $70/t.
Orocobre said lithium prices appear to have bottomed and realised prices in the current quarter are expected to be higher than the September period.
Some level of comfort for Orocobre shareholders could be gained from hard rock lithium play Altura Mining having to call in receivers and managers this week, with another spodumene operation in Australia, Bald Hill, hitting the rocks just over 12 months ago.
Shares in Orocobre were down 3% to $2.54 in morning trade, capitalising the company $875 million.
New shares in the recent placement were priced at $2.52.