Based on the aggregated intelligence of 170,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, coal operator Natural Resource Partners (NYSE: NRP) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

With that in mind, let's take a closer look at Natural Resource's business and see what CAPS investors are saying about the stock right now.

Natural Resource Partners facts

Headquarters (founded)

Houston (2002)

Market Cap

$3.27 billion


Industrial metals and minerals

Trailing-12-Month Revenue

$322.7 million


Chairman/CEO Corbin Robertson Jr.

CFO Dwight Dunlap

Return on Equity (average, past 3 years)



$69 million / $762.4 million

Dividend Yield




Sources: Capital IQ (a division of Standard & Poor's) and Motley Fool CAPS. *Management of the general partner of the partnership.

On CAPS, 95% of the 356 members who have rated Natural Resource believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include Oatflake and mlayfiel.

Just last week, Oatflake tapped Natural Resource as a stabilizing force for your portfolio: "I'm not entirely sure this stock will outperform the S&P 500, but I do think the dividend is a good defensive measure; in combination it should at least be less volatile during down times."

Currently, Natural Resource even sports a P/E of 18.3. That represents a discount to other coal stocks such as CONSOL (25.5), Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) (44.0), and Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) (20.3).

CAPS member mlayfiel expands on the Natural Resource outperform argument:

High oil prices and increased demand from Asia will keep up steady demand for coal, benefiting NRP. In addition, the company doesn't actually mine anything, but rather owns the leases to the reserves and collects royalty payments from the mining companies, meaning that the firm has lower risk in terms of the assets that it must maintain.

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