After a rough 2011, uranium companies started January looking up.
Cameco (TSE:CCO), the world's largest uranium producer, gained 13% over the last five days closing Monday at $21.71. In the last year, Cameco has lost 45% of its value.
Uranium One (TSE:UUU) was up 15% on Monday and closed the day at $2.17 after announcing record production in 2011. In 2011 the company produced 10.7 million pounds U3O8 compared to 7.4 million pounds produced in 2010.
The Market Vectors Nuclear Energy (ETF), which tracks the DAXglobal Nuclear Energy Index, started Tuesday up five percent to $16.39. The index tracks publicly-traded companies engaged in the nuclear energy industry
Investors fled uranium in 2011 after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, which led to announcements that Japan and Germany would be not be building anymore nuclear plants and try to mothball the ones currently operating. However, construction for nuclear power plants are expected to proceed in China and other developing countries, and demand for fuel is still needed for existing plants in the U.S. and elsewhere.
A recovery may have come quicker than some had anticipated. Resource Capital Research, an Australian research group, predicted in December that uranium looked good in the long-term, but the first quarter of 2012 would remain off as sector themes would remain unchanged.