Fourth Quarter Results by Segment – Uranium

  Three months ended
December 31
Highlights 2015 2014 Change
  1. 1 Includes sales and revenue between our uranium, fuel services and NUKEM segments (17,000 pounds in sales and revenue of $0.5 million in Q4 2015, 400,000 pounds in sales and revenue of $15 million in Q4 2014).
Production volume (million lbs) 9.6 8.2 17%
Sales volume (million lbs) 1 11.2 10.7 5%
Average spot price ($US/lb) 35.45 37.13 (5)%
Average long-term price ($US/lb) 44.00 48.00 (8)%
Average realized price ($US/lb) 46.36 50.57 (8)%
  ($Cdn/lb) 61.24 56.78 8%
Average unit cost of sales (including D&A) ($Cdn/lb) 38.25 34.27 12%
Revenue ($ millions) 1 687 606 13%
Gross profit ($ millions) 257 240 7%
Gross profit (%) 37 40 (8)%

Production volumes this quarter were 17% higher compared to the fourth quarter of 2014, mainly as a result of higher production from the rampup of Cigar Lake production, offset by lower production at McArthur River/Key Lake, Rabbit Lake and our US ISR operations. See Uranium – production overview for more information.

Uranium revenues were up 13% due to a 5% increase in sales volumes, which represents normal quarterly variance in our delivery schedule, and an 8% increase in the average realized price.

Average spot and long-term prices decreased, as did our US dollar average realized price due to lower prices under fixed-price contracts, and the mix of market and fixed contracts. However, the effect of foreign exchange resulted in an 8% higher Canadian dollar average realized price than the prior year. In the fourth quarter of 2015, our realized foreign exchange rate was $1.32 compared to $1.12 in the prior year.

Total cost of sales (including D&A) increased by 17% ($429 million compared to $366 million in 2014). This was the result of a 12% increase in the average unit cost of sales and a 5% increase in sales volumes.

The unit cost of sales increased due to an increase in the volume of material purchased throughout the year at prices higher than our average cost of inventory and an increase in the unit production costs related to the addition of higher cost production from Cigar Lake during rampup.

The net effect was a $17 million increase in gross profit for the quarter.

The following table shows the costs of produced and purchased uranium incurred in the reporting periods (which are non-IFRS measures, see the paragraphs below the table). These costs do not include selling costs such as royalties, transportation and commissions, nor do they reflect the impact of opening inventories on our reported cost of sales.

  Three months ended
December 31
($/lb) 2015 2014 Change
  1. 1 In the fourth quarter of 2015, cash costs of purchased material were $33.79 (US) per pound compared to $35.05 (US) per pound in the same period in 2014. In the fourth quarter of 2015, the exchange rate on purchases averaged $1.00 (US) for $1.29 (Cdn) compared to $1.00 (US) for $1.11 (Cdn) during the same period in 2014.
Cash cost 16.04 14.19 13%
Non-cash cost 10.96 7.15 53%
Total production cost 27.00 21.34 27%
Quantity produced (million lbs) 9.6 8.2 17%
Cash cost 1 43.65 39.03 12%
Quantity purchased (million lbs) 3.2 3.7 (14)%
Produced and purchased costs 1 31.16 26.84 16%
Quantities produced and purchased (million lbs) 12.8 11.9 8%

Cash cost per pound, non-cash cost per pound and total cost per pound for produced and purchased uranium presented in the above table are non-IFRS measures. These measures do not have a standardized meaning or a consistent basis of calculation under IFRS. We use these measures in our assessment of the performance of our uranium business. We believe that, in addition to conventional measures prepared in accordance with IFRS, certain investors use this information to evaluate our performance and ability to generate cash flow.

These measures are non-standard supplemental information and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for measures of performance prepared according to accounting standards. These measures are not necessarily indicative of operating profit or cash flow from operations as determined under IFRS. Other companies may calculate these measures differently, so you may not be able to make a direct comparison to similar measures presented by other companies.

To facilitate a better understanding of these measures, the following table presents a reconciliation of these measures to our unit cost of sales for the fourth quarters of 2015 and 2014.

Cash and total cost per pound reconciliation

  Three months ended 
December 31 
($ millions) 2015  2014 
Cost of product sold 328.3  269.0 
Add / (subtract)    
Royalties (49.5) (34.5)
Other selling costs (6.7) (2.3)
Change in inventories 21.5  28.5 
Cash operating costs (a) 293.6  260.7 
Add / (subtract)    
Depreciation and amortization 100.9  96.7 
Change in inventories 4.3  (38.0)
Total operating costs (b) 398.8  319.4 
Uranium produced & purchased (millions lbs) (c) 12.8  11.9 
Cash costs per pound (a ÷ c) 22.94  21.91 
Total costs per pound (b ÷ c) 31.16  26.84