Thursday, March 17, 2011

"Uranium Tumbles On Japan Crisis" (CCJ)

'Tumbles' is a bit mealy-mouthed for the price action, see chart.
From the Wall Street Journal:
The most volatile market since the Japanese earthquake isn't Japanese or U.S. stocks. It is uranium, which until Friday was a little-noticed pocket of the commodities markets.
Trading in uranium is often sporadic, with just a few dozen transactions taking place each month, and trading on the spot market totaling about $2.5 billion last year.

But the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, which have crippled a key nuclear plant and raised questions about the future of the nuclear-power industry, has changed all that—at least for now. Trading has soared as some hedge funds and banks unload their positions, traders said.

Almost three million pounds of uranium have changed hands in the spot market for the metal so far this week, five times more than the average volume, brokers said.

The result is that after an 80% run-up over the past eight months, uranium prices have tumbled. They reached a three-year high of $73 a pound in February, but dropped $13 earlier this week and fell to $49.25 on Wednesday, according to Ux Consulting Co.

Michael Goldenberg, director of nuclear fuels at Evolution Markets, a commodity broker, said the past few days have been "the busiest days" he has had since he started brokering uranium trades three years ago....MORE
HT: The Reformed Broker who had the guts to follow up on uranium and the CCJ call in the January post we linked to: "Analyst: This Time, Uranium Demand Is for Real" and The Reformed Broker's Uranium Bet (CCJ; PDN.tsx,asx; URA)