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Uranium Week: Optimism And Concern

Weekly Reports | Oct 31 2023

While the uranium industry is optimistic about growth in nuclear power, concern remains over availability of supply.

-Uranium spot market quiet due to seminar
-Spot price at 15-year high
-Market participants optimistic but concerned

By Greg Peel

As is typically the case with regard the uranium industry’s plethora of annual market gatherings, activity in the spot market stalled last week as participants attended the Nuclear Energy Institute’s International Uranium Fuel Seminar in North Carolina.

Prices offered by sellers in the spot market nevertheless continued to inch up. Buyers are raising their bid prices, but still lag behind the increases that sellers are incorporating into their offers, industry consultant TradeTech reports.

TradeTech’s weekly spot price indicator rose US50c last week to US$73.50/lb to mark a 15-year high. The spot price is now up 50% year to date.

Buyers continue to display interest in securing material over the next several months, stretching beyond the spot window into the first quarter of 2024. Sellers have responded to this demand by raising offer prices for each successive sales opportunity.

In the term markets, sellers are slowly increasing their offer prices and buyers are showing less resistance to higher prices in order to ensure security of supply, especially in the mid-term delivery window.

TradeTech’s term price indicators remain at US$73.50/lb (mid-term) and US$62.00/lb (long), pending review at month’s end.

The Future

The take-out from the Seminar is, while great optimism exists for future demand for nuclear-generated electricity, as licenses are extended for existing nuclear power plants and advanced reactors and small modular reactors continue along the development path, there is notable concern for how the fuel cycle industry will meet the demand for uranium, conversion, and enrichment in the long term, TradeTech reports.

Several moves by US and other global energy producers have things heading in the right direction, but to keep the momentum moving in support of a sustained nuclear power industry, the supply chain must also be fortified with people, which is a challenge for today's industry as it works to recruit and invest in human resources.

Otherwise, there remains notable pressure from US Congress to end Russian uranium imports, which is expected to be a policy priority now that the House has finally elected a new Speaker.

The concern is utilities will be cut off from Russian supply at a time Western supply of the enriched uranium required for reactors is not yet up to speed.

Uranium companies listed on the ASX:

1AE 27/10/2023 0.1000 0.00% $0.24 $0.05
AGE 27/10/2023 0.0500 6.12% $0.07 $0.03 $0.080 60.0%
BKY 27/10/2023 0.3400 7.58% $0.80 $0.26
BMN 27/10/2023 2.5800 – 3.64% $3.05 $1.19 $3.200 24.0%
BOE 27/10/2023 4.3700 3.92% $4.98 $1.97 48.4 $4.543 4.0%
DYL 27/10/2023 1.2600 – 0.78% $1.41 $0.48 $1.840 46.0%
EL8 27/10/2023 0.4200 – 4.76% $0.59 $0.27
ERA 27/10/2023 0.0300 3.13% $0.30 $0.03
LOT 27/10/2023 0.2200 9.52% $0.29 $0.15 $0.530 140.9%
NXG 27/10/2023 9.2600 1.43% $10.40 $5.11
PDN 27/10/2023 0.9400 3.76% $1.15 $0.52 153.8 $1.165 23.9%
PEN 27/10/2023 0.1200 0.00% $0.20 $0.09 $0.270 125.0%
SLX 27/10/2023 3.2000 0.63% $5.32 $2.56 $5.800 81.2%

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