New Hope Group is undertaking an extensive rehabilitation program at its New Acland coal mine.
New Hope Group is undertaking an extensive rehabilitation program at its New Acland coal mine. Lyndon Keane

Peabody keeps quiet on which mines are getting the chop

PEABODY is remaining quiet on which - if any - of its seven Central Queensland coal mines could be offloaded or shut down, as basement-level coal prices continue to erode profits.

In the company's latest quarterly results, Peabody chief Gregory Boyce told investors that even as demand grew for coal, oversupply was keeping prices down.

From the March to June quarter, the benchmark coal prices fell almost $25 per tonne.

He said the growth of metallurgical coal exports - produced by each of the Bowen Basin mines - would slow for the rest of the year.

For miners, they are unable to offset low prices by simply exporting more.

Mr Boyce flagged sales in the usual complicated corporation jargon, saying the company was "further evaluating the portfolio in recognition of the current environment".

This would include "targeting additional non-core asset sales" beyond a coal deposit Peabody offloaded earlier this year.

When asked for more detail on this review, a Peabody spokeswoman declined to elaborate except to say Peabody was focusing on saving money.

Peabody owns the Burton, Coppabella, Eaglefield, Middlemount, Millennium, Moorvale and North Goonyella mines.

Late last year, Peabody shut down its Wilkie Creek mine near Dalby, costing 200 jobs.



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