Uranium stocks are trending today as commodity prices continue to rise and amid reports that nuclear energy will become increasingly important. Experts predict this shift as the U.S. and European Union lessen their reliance on Russian energy.
Shares of uranium miners Uranium Energy (NYSEMKT:UEC), Denison Mines (NYSEMKT:DNN) and Cameco (NYSE:CCJ), among others, are trending today. This comes as nations around the world look for ways to lessen their reliance on Russian oil, natural gas and coal.
UEC, DNN and CCJ stocks are each up more than 15% year to date as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has driven up energy prices and put a spotlight on uranium as the main driver behind nuclear power plants. The price of uranium has risen 86% over the past year to $56.70, including a nearly 25% gain so far in 2022.
What Happened With Uranium Stocks
In a new round of sanctions, the European Union announced that it will completely ban imports of Russian coal starting this August. The coal ban is the latest attempt by European countries to economically punish Russia over its invasion of Ukraine. However, hitting Russian energy supplies isn’t easy for the EU.
Nearly 20% of the EU’s coal imports come from Russia, according to official European statistics. At the same time, 37% of Europe’s oil imports and 41% of its natural gas imports come from Russia, highlighting the difficulty in sanctioning the regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin. To lessen its reliance on Russian energy products, the EU is turning to nuclear power plants as a viable alternative.
Why It Matters
That nuclear power is back on the political priority lists of governments around the world is good news for uranium producers. This helps to account for the rise in the share prices of uranium stocks in recent months. However, there is no guarantee that nations in Europe and beyond will move forward with plans to erect nuclear power plants, which are still seen by many people as risky and dangerous.
Additionally, nuclear power plants can take years to develop and bring online safely.
The European Union’s plan to stop imports of Russian coal is seen as the beginnings of a shift toward nuclear power and a vote of confidence in the energy source. And uranium stocks are benefitting. However, any development of nuclear power plants in Europe or elsewhere will take years, possibly decades, to complete. As such, it will still be sometime before nuclear energy is working as a viable substitute for Russian oil and natural gas.
On the date of publication, Joel Baglole did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.