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Global coal 2016 in review: a year of coal price extremes

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03 February 2017

Global coal 2016 in review: a year of coal price extremes

Report summary

In 2016, coal prices, which had been in a long continuous free fall causing global mine closures, were suddenly elevated as China experienced a government-induced reduction in domestic coal output. Chinese domestic policy rekindled seaborne markets . Thermal coal prices were lifted by the impacts of Chinese supply policy. Seaborne metallurgical coal prices were influenced by shortage of prime HCC. Carbon prices, nuclear outages and low gas prices caused fuel switching in Europe. Nuclear outages impacted demand in the rest of the world. Seaborne suppliers responded cautiously to rising prices. M&A activity remained subdued, but Anglo and Rio announced coal sector exit. 

Table of contents

  • Chinese domestic policy rekindled seaborne markets
  • 2016 was a year of extremes in coal prices
  • Thermal coal prices were lifted by the impacts of Chinese supply policy
  • Seaborne metallurgical coal prices were influenced by shortage of prime HCC
  • India changed course and imported less coal
  • Carbon prices, nuclear outages and low gas prices caused fuel switching in Europe
  • Nuclear outages impacted demand in the rest of the world
    • Major global mine closings, idlings, suspensions, restarts and planned restarts, 2016

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  • Global coal 2016 in review: a year of coal price extremes: Table 1

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