Costs weigh heavy on James River

HIGH costs continued to trouble James River Coal Company during the first quarter as the company reported a $US7.3 million net loss.
Costs weigh heavy on James River Costs weigh heavy on James River Costs weigh heavy on James River Costs weigh heavy on James River Costs weigh heavy on James River

Courtesy James River Coal.

Angie Tomlinson

While costs per ton in Central Appalachia declined 9.8% compared to the previous quarter, and fell 4.2% in the Illinois Basin, it was not enough to bring the producer into the black.

“Our cash costs per ton went down in both CAPP and the Illinois Basin. This was despite higher costs in a number of areas including raw materials, workers compensation, government mandated safety costs, and higher than normal medical costs,” chief executive Peter Socha said.

“We believe that this is a result of closing some higher cost operations in late 2006 and early 2007 and allowing our operations management team to focus all of their time and energies on our remaining portfolio of mines.

“We also believe that the coal markets have bottomed out as coal supply has dropped dramatically from CAPP and coal demand is returning to more normal patterns."

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