Natural gas has become the coal industry's arch-nemesis, thanks to record production and relatively cheap prices. Fortunately for a few companies, this trend has had a negative impact only on the domestic thermal coal market. Export markets for both metallurgical and thermal coal still have promise.
That's why Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANRZ ) is certainly one of the better picks in an industry that has a murky future. It has a diverse asset base in terms of both geography and product type. Much like larger peer Peabody Energy (NYSE: BTU ) , Alpha Natural holds the keys to cheap mines in the Powder River Basin, along with mines in the Appalachia region, which typically come with a higher production cost structure.
Because exports are becoming a much bigger part of the domestic coal landscape, Peabody Energy worked on landing deals to get its cheaper coal from the Powder River and Illinois basins to India, China, and the EU. For investors looking to capitalize on a rebound in the U.S. coal market, The Motley Fool has authored a special new premium report detailing exactly why Peabody Energy is perhaps most worthy of your consideration. Don't miss out on this invaluable resource -- simply click here now to claim your copy today.
So will ANR's metallurgical coal assets and its industry-leading exports keep its shares from bottoming out any further? Our Motley Fool analysts talk about it in the following video.