Argus introduces new Central Appalachia coal price point

Argus Media said Dec. 19 that the U.S. coal industry in January will start settling standard-heat rail coal trading using an index of coal price assessments from Argus.

Argus coal assessments will be used to settle the new coal product, a standardized 12,000 Btu/lb, CSX Transportation-originated coal forward contract. This was unanimously approved by members of the Coal Trading Association at their annual meeting on Dec. 9.

With nearly three years of data history in the lower-heat Central Appalachian rail coal market, Argus said it is uniquely positioned to provide a settlement basis in these forward contracts. The 12,000 Btu trading product uses the Argus index to adjust loading volumes for CSX-originated coal, delivered fob railcar.

The new trading spec reflects the changing quality standards of U.S. coal production, which have shifted over time. The new 12,000 Btu/lb standard specification is a better match with the region’s typical product than earlier coal specifications, Argus said.

“We are pleased the energy trading community relies on Argus for indexation in this exciting new coal contract,” Argus Media chairman and chief executive Adrian Binks said. “This is an important extension of Argus’ leadership in coal markets and commitment to transparency in world energy markets.”

The index is published in Argus Coal Daily, a market report covering the U.S. coal industry and markets. Other key settlement uses of Argus U.S. coal data include physical market supply agreements and quality adjustments.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.