Global thermal coal short-term outlook January 2018: cold winter, supply shortage, hot prices
The perfect storm is happening in the energy market in China. In addition to the harsh winter weather that has increased coal demand for heating, the country's reversal of its coal-to-gas switching efforts has caused an increase in consumption of both domestic and international coal. FOB Newcastle has been above US$90/t for almost six months now. Domestic coal prices are expected to continue strengthening throughout the beginning of the Chinese New Year. Fundamentals point to a softening in prices after February.