Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of liquid natural gas transporter Golar LNG (Nasdaq: GLNG) jumped as much as 10% in intraday trading on heavier-than-average volume.

So what: Though there's no news from Golar today, a couple of external events may be pushing the stock up. In broader shipping news, Kirby (NYSE: KEX) agreed to buy K-Sea Transportation (NYSE: KSP) at a 26% premium to K-Sea's previous closing price. Though K-Sea focuses on oil, the deal may have stoked investor excitement in energy transporters in general. Potentially more notable for Golar though, is the disaster in Japan. Japan was already one of the world's largest importers of LNG, but with a good chunk of Japan's nuclear power generation still offline, the country may have to increase its use of natural gas in the near term.

Now what: Depending on how the nuclear situation in Japan resolves, there could be a longer-term benefit for Golar and the natural gas industry in general if the scare prompts Japan and other countries around the world to de-emphasize nuclear energy and increase usage of natural gas. Golar's stock has been on a huge run since late last year, which makes it decidedly less attractive than it was, but many investors will no doubt still be drawn to the healthy 5.6% dividend yield.

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Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. You can check out what Matt is keeping an eye on by visiting his CAPS portfolio, or you can follow Matt on Twitter @KoppTheFool or on his RSS feed. The Fool's disclosure policy prefers dividends over a sharp stick in the eye.