U.S. coal companies, analysts expect strong financial headwinds to continue through 2020

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):“Flat is the new up,” one analyst said as coal companies reported another brutal quarter for investors in the space while domestic markets continued on a path of secular decline and export markets took a turn for the worse.For the last five years, the S&P 500 has consistently outperformed the SNL Coal Index, and the gap continues to widen through 2019. While coal equities struggled to win the favor of investors even when robust export markets offered coal companies an outlet to sell their fuel, share prices are plummeting as those opportunities diminish.“Export markets are challenging right now, and there is a widespread fear amongst investors that all U.S. coal producers will have to retreat significantly from the export markets, resulting in significant EBITDA declines,” Consol Energy Inc. President and CEO Jimmy Brock said on a Nov. 5 earnings call. Brock added that Consol was bracing for continued weak pricing through 2020, but remained optimistic about a potential recovery.Mark Levin, an analyst with Seaport Global Securities LLC, praised Consol’s assets and the product it sells in a Nov. 5 note. Levin said that, unlike many of its peers, the company managed to avoid revising its guidance. Since “flat is the new up,” Levin chalked up the company’s performance, in line with expectations, to the “victory column.”Share prices declined at major U.S. coal companies despite aggressive share buyback programs rolled out by most major U.S. coal producers in recent years. Staring down a diminishing domestic market, weaker export markets and the political uncertainty of a 2020 election, Levin recently encouraged the coal industry to “hoard cash.”Levin said management teams talking on third-quarter earnings calls sound like they are bracing for recent trends — near-record-low domestic consumption, met coal prices flirting with three-year lows, and overall weak coal export volumes — to continue into 2020. If a company has an unsustainable quarterly distribution or a non-essential project, it is time to cut it, he added.More ($): Already flailing through 2019, coal equities dove even lower in third quarter U.S. coal companies, analysts expect strong financial headwinds to continue through 2020last_img read more

Press Picks for Top 5 Movies of 2015

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Hollywood dominated 2015 with some superb movies, transporting moviegoers to other worlds, gazing into the future, reflecting on the past, and even showing some familiar character faces. In the order of their release, below are the Press’ favorite 2015 movies.Ex MachinaThe sci-fi thriller assesses the world’s first artificial intelligence. Almost completely covered in CGI effects, Alicia Vikander delivers an impressive and eerily life-like portrayal as the AI. Joined by programmer Caleb Smith (Domhnall Gleeson) and the oddball AI creator Nathan Bateman (Oscar Isaac), the story takes a bit of a weird turn. Ultimately, the film explores the current and controversial relationship between man and machine.Mad Max: Fury RoadContinuing director George Miller’s 30-year-old franchise, the Road Warrior returns to a simple chase plot through his barbaric and outlandish apocalyptic nightmare. Beautifully choreographed but intense action sequences (literally) drive the story forward, leaving the worldbuilding and character development to the stunning visuals, leaving the unnecessary explanations in the desert Wasteland’s dust. Charlize Theron’s one-armed Furiosa steals the spotlight sometimes from Max (Tom Hardy), but their journey is exciting and fun. Open-minded audiences will finish this film exclaiming, “What a day! What a lovely day!”The MartianMatt Damon is stranded in space … again. This time he’s on Mars and needs to grow food and water on a planet where nothing grows, establish contact with Earth, and ultimately, “science the shit out of this.” What’s expected to be a predictably depressing survival movie surprises with a comically sarcastic and optimistic main character and overall tone. Even more interesting, the scenario is realistic and backed 100 percent by NASA, which “coincidentally” announced that water was found on Mars just around the film’s release. Check out the Press’ complete review here.SpotlightOkay, maybe we journalists are a little biased here. We like to think our job is hard work, but few can compete with The Boston Globe’s investigations and disturbing revelations into the cover-ups of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. The dramatized retelling of the widespread scandals enlightens viewers to the infuriating process of investigative journalism when impeded by opposition. Releasing this film when religious skepticism is at an all-time peak seemed like curious timing, too.This photo provided by Disney shows, Adam Driver as Kylo Ren with his Lightsaber in a scene from the new film, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” The movie releases in the U.S. on Dec. 18, 2015. (Film Frame/Disney/Lucasfilm via AP) ORG XMIT: CAET177Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force AwakensLet’s be honest, we all saw this one coming. Star Wars is back! Maybe not quite more powerful than we could possibly imagine, but still back! Clashing lightsabers, one Millennium Falcon, and some screeching TIE Fighters returned fans old and new to a galaxy far, far away. Does it surpass the original trilogy? Hell no! But the new characters separated themselves from the original cast enough to claim the story as their own and set the stage for the now highly anticipated Ep. VIII in 2017. Check out the Press’ nostalgic review here.last_img read more