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A Uranium One processing plant. The miner reported on Monday, May 7, 2012 that its first-quarter earnings fell to $4.5 million as it reported increased production, but lower uranium prices and a hedging-related charge. (Handout/Handout)
A Uranium One processing plant. The miner reported on Monday, May 7, 2012 that its first-quarter earnings fell to $4.5 million as it reported increased production, but lower uranium prices and a hedging-related charge. (Handout/Handout)

Uranium One profit falls while production rises Add to ...

Uranium One Inc. said its first-quarter earnings fell to $4.5-million as it reported increased production, but lower uranium prices and a hedging-related charge.

The Toronto-based miner said Monday it broke even on a per-share basis for the quarter ended March 31 compared with a profit of $14-million, or a penny per share a year earlier.

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Revenue was $95.9-million compared to $101.9-million.

Excluding one-time items including an $8.2-million ruble bond hedge charge, the company reported adjusted earnings of $15.1-million, or two cents per share, compared with $15-million, or two cents in the same quarter of 2011.

Production was 18-per-cent higher at 2.8 million pounds and sales volumes grew 8 per cent. However, the average realized sales price fell to $53 per pound from $61 per pound in the first quarter of 2011.

Uranium sales have been hard hit following the earthquake and tsunami in Japan last year that crippled the Fukushima nuclear plant.

All but one of Japan’s nuclear reactors have been shut down for maintenance and safety checks. The last reactor, on the northern island of Hokkaido, will be shut down this month. The timing for when any reactors will be restarted remains unclear.

The company said the consequences of the disaster have now been fully factored into the market.

It said global uranium demand is growing as a result of a growing reliance on nuclear power in emerging markets including China, India, Russia, South Korea and the Middle East.

Uranium One, which has assets in Kazakhstan, the United States, Australia and Tanzania, paid $150-million to buy 13.9 per cent of Mantra Resources in March.

Shares in the company fell 2.4 per cent or seven cents to close at $2.82 Monday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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