Coal, Like Uranium, Left for Dead (thought not as bad)

Two weeks ago I discussed the nuclear and uranium industries and how the uranium mining business had become a ghost down of investor interest.

Well, another environmentalist’s favorite, coal, had recently been in a similar (though not as deep) funk. However, it looks like the coal business may be awakening. The exchange traded fund KOL which tracks an index of coal companies has risen off its chart bottom:

I’m not sure if this will keep going, however, the sentiment was that cheap natural gas would sharply diminish the use of “thermal” coal in US power plants – which is true.  However, companies are now exporting coal to higher priced markets and about that cheap natural gas thing:

That might not stay AS cheap as it was. I don’t think gas will hit the prices that made Enron and the State of California famous anytime soon, but they need to be higher or the companies won’t drill for it as they’re losing money at these low prices.

Therefore, coal may not be as dead as various coal companies’ stock charts make them out to be. Time will tell.

At the time of this writing, I or my clients currently hold the following positions mentioned in this column: NONE