A cold day for coal, with more to follow?

Coal stocks (KOL) had a terrible 2013 amid much improved second halves, but with coal getting hit early this year, Ben Levisohn wonders if the coal boomlet has run its course.

The commodity currencies remain under pressure in a well supplied commodities market and weakening Chinese growth, J.P. Morgan's John Bridges explains, as the firm lowers its coking coal benchmark forecasts by $10/ton for 2014 and 2015; however, rail companies may relinquish some margin to support U.S. met coal after benefiting from sharply higher freight rates as the coking coal price peaked.

In today's trade, ANR -6.3%, CNX -1.4%, BTU -1%, ACI -2%, WLT -4.5%, JRCC -2.1%.

Yesterday: Despite the gas boom, U.S. coal isn't dead.

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Comments (9)
  • 6151621
    , contributor
    Comments (1172) | Send Message
    Good luck. Coal companies may need to die but coal is still a vital commodity.
    7 Jan 2014, 05:12 PM Reply Like
  • Brandond
    , contributor
    Comments (509) | Send Message
    Funny, the WSJ just ran an article yesterday announcing "Coal is not dead" http://on.wsj.com/1dKV6Os


    I'm convinced some of these analysts publish these articles to shake out weak hands and get underpriced shares before they upgrade. With natural gas spiking and exports likely to keep prices high, look for coal to continue be a heating source here and particularly in China and India.
    7 Jan 2014, 05:37 PM Reply Like
  • omarbradley
    , contributor
    Comments (966) | Send Message
    who do you think gets paid to write the stories? it's not the person telling the truth. coal and coal shipping are fine...the problem is that the dollar is surging and coal hasn't restored itself to its rightful place as a heating fuel. if that happens that "lump" could be worth an awful lot.
    8 Jan 2014, 01:48 AM Reply Like
  • jzut
    , contributor
    Comments (151) | Send Message
    7 Jan 2014, 06:28 PM Reply Like
  • Bugle Boy
    , contributor
    Comments (176) | Send Message
    There is a term often used in contracts and financial reports. To paraphrase here, there are numerous issues, the resolution of which are both unknown and unknowable.


    "lowering its forecasts by $10/ton for 2014 and 2015" What? It appears that this is a casting of bones. Any number of factors can effect this guess. It is Jan 7th!


    Long ACI
    7 Jan 2014, 08:41 PM Reply Like
  • nemonemo
    , contributor
    Comments (339) | Send Message
    funny they dont want to talk about record cold and ng price anymore.
    7 Jan 2014, 11:26 PM Reply Like
  • an opinion
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    I would rather hear what the coal companies say about the future of coal than an analyst. Peabody reports at the end of the month, let's see how they see the future of coal ... Arch reports the first part of February ... these folks live the biz everyday.


    If you are a trader of stocks, not an investor, then you might not be successful. If you are a long term investor (more than a year), then you should see profits by the coal industry ... be patient.


    I am long BTU
    8 Jan 2014, 01:09 AM Reply Like
  • a alto
    , contributor
    Comments (364) | Send Message
    TVA shut off power to Murray State University during this cold snap , due to record power demand . Result was thousands of dollars of damage to broken water pipes , and students with no heat ! TVA also shut off power to an industrial complex in Calvert City , Ky. affecting the companies who work there . This is a result of the Democrats community organizer and his brainwashed followers . So how did those windmills work for you taxpayers , who now have to foot the bill for this ? We should build more coal plants not shut them down .
    8 Jan 2014, 07:34 AM Reply Like
  • tiger8896
    , contributor
    Comments (743) | Send Message
    If the coal stocks haven't gone up despite catalyst's like rising NG and to a lesser extent Capp coal prices, a severe cold snap occurring across the country and technical factors like laggards in the previous year outperforming stocks in the current year what makes anyone think these stocks are going up.


    Next market correction which may occur later this month should see these coal stocks at new lows.
    8 Jan 2014, 03:24 PM Reply Like
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