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Action Returns In Uranium

Commodities | Mar 20 2012

By Greg Peel

For weeks the global spot uranium market has been dogged by the geographical spread of UF6 on offer in the US and U3O8 sought in Europe leading to very little trading activity. As that gap has begun to narrow the buying interest has built up.

Industry consultant TradeTech had noted buyers sniffing around but few had felt the urgency to commit until a fortnight ago when a frustrated seller just dumped into the bid and walked off. This took TradeTech's weekly spot price indicator down to US$51.00/lb and suddenly the buyers attacked. The end result was seven transactions totalling 1.6mlbs of U3O8 equivalent last week. TradeTech's indicator remains at US$51.00/lb, but that volume compares with only 400,000lbs the previous week.

All the buyers were represented – speculators, producers and utilities. There were no new transactions reported in the term market albeit TradeTech notes a few supply contract tenders are nearing completion. TradeTech's term price indicators remain at US$54/lb (medium) and US$60/lb (long). 

UF6 is still for sale in the US at below US$51/lb, but there's not a lot of interest. The interest in U3O8 at US$51/lb is further evidence that the US$50/lb mark is a line in the sand below which the real users – utilities – consider stocks to be good value. 

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