This article is bad news for coal companies hoping that India and China would be the key to raising prices. While I do believe that coal will remain a key cog in a comprehensive energy plan, I do think that cheaper natural gas, and improving renewable alternatives are decreasing long term demand for coal. The companies that survive will be the ones that aren’t burdened by large debt loads, and companies that can produce the coal for the lowest costs. Alpha Natural Resources (ANR) is a perfect example of a coal company with wonderful assets, but by paying too much for Massey Energy, the company’s survival is now in doubt.
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