* Uranium producers shares fall on nuclear crisis
* Cameco down 15.6 pct at $30.60 on TSX
* Uranium One down 25.3 percent at C$4.45
TORONTO, March 14 Shares in Cameco Inc, the
world's second largest uranium miner, fell sharply on Monday,
amid fears of a huge hit to sales and profits if Japan curbs
nuclear use in response to Friday's devastating earthquake.
Cameco (CCO.TO) (CCJ.N) shares were down as much as 22.6
percent at C$28.09 as Japan battled to prevent a nuclear
catastrophe after the massive earthquake damaged nuclear
By mid-morning, shares were down 15.8 percent at C$30.60.
Shares in Uranium One, Canada's second largest producer,
were also sharply lower although an official said he did not
expect much of a long-term impact.
TD analyst Greg Barnes said Cameco sells 10 to 15 percent
of its uranium to Japan. If, in what he described as a worst
case scenario, Cameco lost 10 percent of sales, it would
translate to a 21 percent drop in earnings per share.
He slashed his price target on shares of Cameco to C$42
from C$51, still way above current levels.
The damage to reactors at Japanese nuclear power plants has
raised concerns about future of the industry in Japan, where
nuclear power accounted for about a third of energy generation
before the quake, the strongest ever to hit Japan.
Cameco expects to produce 21.9 million pounds of uranium in
2011, around 16 percent of global mine production of the metal
used to make fuel for nuclear reactors. It plans to sell up to
33 million pounds.
Japan has closed 11 of its 54 reactors since the
earthquake. Dahlman Rose analyst Anthony Young said in a note
to clients that the affected reactors consume about 340,000
pounds of uranium a month.
Uranium One UUU.TO, Canada's second largest uranium
producer, were down 25.34 percent at C$4.45 mid-morning on the
Toronto Stock Exchange.
A company executive said there could be a short-term impact
if the Japanese reactors stay offline, due to a surplus of
about 3 million pounds of uranium on the spot market. Uranium
One is highly exposed to the spot price.
"Longer term, I don't think this will have much of an
impact," said Uranium One Vice President of Strategic Affairs
Earlier Monday, shares of Energy Resources of Australia
(ERA.AX), a unit of global miner Rio Tinto (RIO.AX) (RIO.L)
fell 12.3 percent, while Paladin's (PDN.AX) shares fell 16.5
percent in Sydney. [ID:nL3E7EE00B]
(Reporting by Julie Gordon and Euan Rocha; editing by Janet