USEC stock makes big jump on Monday

By Frank Lewis

November 13, 2013

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

USEC Inc. (NYSE: USU) shares closed up 36.74 percent on nearly 1.3 million shares traded on Monday. The stock posted one of the largest percentage increases on the NYSE that day and traded in between 5.12 and 7.50 Monday. The energy company engages in the supply of low enriched uranium (LEU) for commercial nuclear power plants in the United States, Japan, and internationally.

On the USEC, Inc. third quarter conference call on Nov. 5, USEC, Inc. President and CEO John K. Welch talked about the company’s progress in demonstrating the commercial cascade of the American Centrifuge Technology and the headway he said the company is making in transitioning the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant back to the Department of Energy.

“Bottom line upfront, we reported a net loss for the third quarter of $44.3 million compared to net income of $4.5 million in the same quarter last year. For the year-to-date we reported a net loss of $87.2 million compared to a net loss of $116.3 million in the nine month period of 2012,” Welch said. “The net losses for the 2013 periods are due in part to lower SWU (Separative Work Units) deliveries year-over-year. The more significant fact however was the recognition of non-production expenses related to the cessation of enrichment at the Paducah plant in June.”

Welch said the steps the company is taking to prepare the Paducah GDP for return to DOE resulted in substantial non-production expenses that are charged directly to cost of sales and are playing a significant role in USEC’s financial results in 2013. Without those non-production expenses, Welch said the company would have reported a gross profit for the quarter and year-to-date.

“In the week since the decision was made in late May to cease enrichment at the plant we have taken steps to prepare facilities for eventual return to DOE,” Welch said. “We notified all of our employees of potential lay-offs and we are presently in our second round of work-force reductions. The current round will continue into January and involves approximately 90 employees.”

At 10:39 a.m. Tuesday, USEC stock was at 6.9201, down 0.2999 or 4.15 percent on the Nasdaq Exchange.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.