UPDATE 1-Cameco boosts annual dividend 43 percent

Thu Dec 2, 2010 1:59pm EST

* Boosts annual dividend to C$0.40 from C$0.28

* To pay quarterly dividend of C$0.07 on Jan 14

* Shares down 0.37 percent at C$37.92 (In U.S. dollars unless noted)

TORONTO, Dec 2 (Reuters) - Cameco Corp (CCO.TO) said on Thursday that it had approved a 43 percent increase in its annual cash dividend and that it remains confident in the long-term potential for uranium.

The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan-based uranium producer will increase its annual dividend to 40 Canadian cents a share, from 28 Canadian cents starting in 2011. The dividend will be paid quarterly, starting with the first quarter of 2011.

The company has boosted its dividend seven times in the last nine years.

"The substantial increase in our annual dividend demonstrates our confidence in our business and in the long-term fundamentals of the uranium market," said Cameco Chief Executive Jerry Grandey in a press release.

In an interview with Reuters in October, Grandey said he sees long-term uranium prices staying in the range of $50 to $70 a pound.

Shares in Cameco were down 0.37 percent at C$37.92 on Thursday afternoon on the Toronto Stock Exchnage.

($1=$1.00 Canadian) (Reporting by Julie Gordon)

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