The company said metallurgical coal production for the quarter ended September 30 is expected at 3.3 million metric tons, a 14% rise over the second quarter of 2012, when it reported 2.9 million metric tons.
Conversely, third-quarter coal sales volumes for met output will be an estimated 2.6 million metric tons, down from 2.8 million metric tons in June period this year.
Prices had continued to slide, officials said, with third-quarter averages of $198 for hard coking coal, including low-vol, mid-vol and a small proportion of high-vol output. In the prior quarter, the company reported a $US201 average inclusive of carryover ton impacts that were previously priced.
Walter said in its preliminary projections that low-vol PCI should be $163 inclusive of carryover tonnage; this is versus $164 in the 2012 second quarter. It cited a common factor, current trends in global coal markets, for the results.
The producer is now putting together its final numbers for the earnings conference, scheduled for November 6 at 8am Central time.
Walter officials said in June that it was on a solid path to meet its whole-year guidance; it will be a few more weeks until we learn if that is still the case.
At that time, it projected a production range of 11.5-13Mt, about 75% of which would be high-margin hard coking coal. The remaining 25% would be pulverized coal injection.
The producer bought Western Coal last year and now has mines in Alabama, West Virginia, western Canada and Wales.