Canadian Mining Journal


Cameco CEO cites ‘toughest market in the last decade’

VANCOUVER — Despite a renaissance in certain sectors of the mining industry, predominantly precious metals, Canadian uranium leader Cameco (TSX: CCO; NYSE: CCJ) is feeling the pain. The nuclear market has yet to recover from the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011, while oversupply conditions have depressed U3O8 spot prices to an 11-year low.

On July 28, Cameco reported what easily qualifies as its worst quarterly performance since 2005. The company registered an adjusted net loss of $57 million, or 14¢ per share, and saw its sales plummet 20% quarter-on-quarter and 40% year-on-year. Cameco sold just 4.6 million lb of U3O8 over the past three months, which equates to its lowest level in 10 years.

“I can say that this [second quarter] has probably been the toughest quarter in the toughest market we’ve seen in the last decade, and our results reflect just how challenging the environment is today. Uranium demand remains low and prices are very depressed,” explained president and CEO Tim Gitzel during a conference call.

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