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Arch Coal (ARCH) Q4 Earnings Beat on Coking Coal Sales Growth

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Arch Coal Inc. (ARCH - Free Report) delivered fourth-quarter 2018 operating earnings of $4.44 per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3.28 by 35.4%. The bottom line also improved 7.8% on a year-over-year basis.

Total Revenues

Total revenues in the reported quarter were $650.9 million, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $558 million by 16.6%. The reported revenues also improved 7.8% on a year-over-year basis.

Segment Details

In the Metallurgical segment, the company sold 2.1 million tons of coal compared with 1.8 million tons in the prior-year quarter. The company recorded cash margins of $46.69 per ton compared with $31.32 in the year-ago quarter, owing to higher selling price of coal.

During the quarter, Powder River Basin segment’s cash margin per ton was down 20.8% year over year. The company sold 19.5 million tons, in line with the year-ago quarter.

In the Other Thermal segment, the company posted a cash margin of $6.3 per ton compared with $10.55 in the year-ago quarter.

Arch Coal Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Arch Coal Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Arch Coal Inc. Quote

Financial Highlights

Cash and cash equivalents as of Dec 31 2018 were $264.9 million compared with $273.4 million at 2017-end.

Long-term debt as of Dec 31, 2018 was $300.2 million compared with $310.1 million at the end of 2017.

Cash provided from operating activities in 2018 was $417.9 million compared with $396.5 million a year ago.

Arch Coal continues to increase its shareholders’ value through dividends and share repurchases.  The company returned nearly $640 million to its shareholders via share buybacks and dividends over the course of last seven quarters.

Guidance

Arch Coal expects thermal coal sales volume guidance for 2019 within 80-85 million tons. It reaffirmed coking coal volume guidance in the range of 6.6-7 million tons.

Zacks Rank

Arch Coal sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Other Releases

Peabody Energy Corp. (BTU - Free Report) announced fourth-quarter 2018 earnings of 88 cents per share, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 68 cents by 29.4%.

CONSOL Coal Resources LP’s (CCR - Free Report) fourth-quarter 2018 operating earnings of 59 cents per unit beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 48 cents.
 
CONSOL Energy Inc. (CEIX - Free Report) delivered fourth-quarter 2018 adjusted earnings of $1.41 per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 76 cents by 85.5%.

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