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August coal deliveries to US power plants jump to seven-month high: EIA

Coal deliveries to US power plants rose to a seven-month high 40.53 million st in August, up 8.3% from the previous month, but 20.6% lower than the year-ago month, data from the US Energy Information Administration data showed Oct. 30.

The shipments in August were the lowest in over 13 years for the corresponding month and was also down 33.5% from the five-year average.
Subbituminous coal deliveries were at 22.46 million st in August, up from 20.42 million st in July and 28.64 million st in the year-ago month.

Bituminous coal deliveries to US power plants also rose to 13.59 million st, up from 12.56 million st in the previous month, but down from 17.73 million st a year earlier.

Subbituminous coal deliveries through August are at 158.21 million st, while bituminous deliveries are at 93.54 million st, compared with 201.69 million st and 137.79 million st, respectively, in the first eight months of 2019.

Average delivery costs for bituminous coal to regulated plants fell to $53.75/st in August, down from $54.49/st in July and $56.40/st in the year-ago month, according to the data. Subbituminous delivery costs to regulated plants declined to $30.21/st in August, from $30.58/st in July and $32.36/st in August 2019.

The remaining deliveries in August were 4.04 million st of lignite and 439,102 st of waste coal, compared with 4.08 million st and 373,869 st, respectively, in July, and 4.45 million st and 242,703 st in the year-ago month.

Imports to US power plants rose to 302,152 st in August, up from 214,879 st in July, but down from 341,843 st in August 2019.

Contract, spot purchase deliveries rise on month

Contract deliveries, or purchases with a term of one year or longer, rose 36.98 million st in August, up from 33.91 million st in July, but down from 45.45 million st in August 2019.

Spot coal shipments, or contract deliveries less than one year, rose to 3.52 million st, up from 3.49 million st in July, but down from 5.55 million st in the year-ago month.

Spot deliveries from coal mines in Wyoming rose to 1.62 million st in August, from 1.48 million st in July, while spot shipments from West Virginia and Illinois were at 281,082 st and 115,887 st, respectively, compared with 276,143 st and 182,278 st in July. Spot deliveries from Pennsylvania and Virginia mines were at 101,556 st and 80,673 st in August, respectively, compared with 71,267 st and 155,043 st in the previous month.

Rail deliveries were at 27.26 million st in August, compared with 24.47 million st in July and 35.99 million st in the year-ago month, while barge deliveries rose to an eight-month high 5.04 million st, up from 4.79 million st in July, but down from 6.01 million st a year ago.

Deliveries by truck fell to 3.94 million st, down from the 11-month high 4.09 million st in July and 4.45 million st in August 2019, while 4.19 million st was moved by conveyor, compared with 4.79 million st in July and 4.49 million st in the year-ago month.
Source: Platts

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