Domestic coal demand has seen a sharp decline over the past few years as utilities across the U.S. have switched to cheaper/cleaner natural gas. Despite the sharp drop in domestic demand, foreign demand for coal has continued to grow. In 2012, the U.S. exported a record of more than 124 million tons of coal, topping the previous record set in 1981 of 112.5 million tons. At a recent investor presentation, Peabody Energy stated they expect global coal demand to increase by 4 percent in 2013, driven by a 13 percent growth from China and India combined.
Arch Coal Inc. (NYSE:ACI - News) shares traded in the range of $4.56 to $4.69 Tuesday before settling to close at $4.56, a decrease of 4.60 percent. The stock appears to be facing resistance at the $4.70 and $4.96 levels. The company has increased its profile in Asia by opening an office in Beijing's Chaoyang District and hiring Zhang Shijie to lead Chinese marketing efforts. Shares of Arch Coal have fallen approximately 37.7 percent in 2013.
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Alpha Natural Resources, Inc. (NYSE:ANR - News) shares traded in the range of $6.18 to $6.29 Tuesday before settling to close at $6.25, a decrease of 1.73 percent. The stock appears to be facing resistance at $6.71. The company reported metallurgical coal shipments totaled 5.1 million tons for the first quarter of 2013, compared to 4.9 million tons in the year ago quarter. Shares of Alpha Natural Resources have fallen approximately 35.8 percent in 2013.
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Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU - News) shares traded in the range of $17.50 to $18.14 Tuesday before settling to close at $17.64, a decrease of 4.34 percent. The stock appears to be facing some resistance at the $18.30 and $18.99 levels. In the company’s recent earnings release Peabody predicted that “U.S. coal consumption for electricity generation will grow by 60 to 80 million tons over 2012 levels”. Shares of Peabody Energy have gained approximately 27.4 percent in 2013.
More information on Peabody Energy and access to the free equity report can be found at:
James River Coal Company (NASDAQ:JRCC - News) shares traded in the range of $2.41 to $2.55 before settling to close at $2.41, a decrease of 6.95 percent. The stock appears to be facing resistance at $2.62 with some support at $2.37. Raymond James has recently downgraded the company’s rating to “underperform” from “market perform”. Shares of James River Coal Company have fallen approximately 25 percent in 2013.
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