Concerns about near-term uranium supply saw the price of the yellow metal jump to a 16-year high last week. Here is a collection of uranium stocks to watch based on recent project updates.
- Uranium Energy Corp has announced that production at its Christensen Ranch project in Wyoming will restart imminently.
- Lotus Resources is entering the final phase of planning to restart its Kayelekera project in Malawi.
- Encore Energy is targeting early 2024 for a production restart at its Alta Mesa project in southern Texas.
Uranium Energy Corp
The Production Restart Stock
Uranium Energy Corp [UEC] announced last week that it’s restarting unhedged uranium production at its Christensen Ranch project in Wyoming, which was put on hold back in 2018. The uranium producer has been steadily bringing the site out of care and maintenance since last year and the market conditions are now right for a restart, according to President and CEO Amir Adnani. “Uranium market fundamentals are the best the industry has witnessed, and various supply shocks have accelerated the bull market with recent prices eclipsing the $100 per pound level,” Adnani said in a press release.
The Final Planning Phase Stock
Lotus Resources [LTSRF] is moving into the final phase of planning at its Kayelekera Uranium Project in Malawi. Lotus owns 85% of Kayelekera, which it acquired from Paladin Energy [PALAF] in 2020. “Lotus is… undertaking the necessary planned activities to prepare Kayelekera for a potential restart of production in late 2025 when the supply gap for the nuclear utilities is forecast,” said Lotus Managing Director Keith Bowes in a regulatory announcement released 16 January.
The Milestone Year Ahead Stock
Fission Uranium [FCUUF] is preparing to start drilling at its Patterson Lake South project in Canada's Athabasca Basin, the company announced last week. Back in December, the Canadian mineral exploration company said that a draft environmental impact statement will be submitted in Q1 2024. “We are anticipating another milestone year for Fission in 2024 as we advance the Triple R deposit towards production on time and on budget,” commented Fission President and CEO Ross McElroy at the time. Production is targeted for 2029.
The Project Update Stock
EnCore Energy [EU] provided investors with an update on its Alta Mesa Project in southern Texas last week, confirming that it’s on schedule to restart production in the early part of this year. Encore agreed to sell 30% of the Alta Mesa project to Boss Energy [BQSSF] back in December for $70m — the deal is expected to be completed in February. “This transaction provides enCore with proceeds … giving us the financial flexibility to ramp up our efforts in Texas, Wyoming and South Dakota,” said enCore Executive Chair William M Sheriff in a statement.
The Profit Swing Stock
Yellow Cake [YLLXF] swung to a $458.8m net profit for the six months to the end of September, compared to a net loss of $145 5m in the year-ago period, according to the uranium-holding company’s latest earnings, released on 6 December. Its physical uranium holdings increased from 18.8 million pounds to 20.2 million pounds and this is expected to rise to 21.7 million pounds in the first half of 2024 as part of its long-term purchase agreement with Kazatomprom [NATKY], the world’s largest producer and seller of natural uranium. The Yellow Cake share price is up 17.9% year-to-date through 22 January.
Another Way to Invest in Uranium
Sprott Uranium Miners ETF
The Sprott Uranium Miners ETF [URNM] holds all five stocks as of 19 January. The fund is a pure play on the investment theme, so doesn’t provide a portfolio breakdown. The fund is up 40% in the past year through 22 January and up 67.5% in the past six months.
The Global X Uranium ETF [URA] also holds all five stocks. As of 31 December, energy companies account for 64.8% of the portfolio, while industrials and materials had weightings of 20.8% and 12.6%; information technology and financials had single-digit allocations. The fund is up 44.7% in the past year and up 48.8% in the past six months.
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