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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Peabody Energy pulls plug on Tinkler's coal comeback, (NYSE: BTU)

U.S. coal producer Peabody Energy has pulled the $130 million sale of its Australian Wilkie Creek mine to former billionaire Nathan Tinkler, appearing to dash the young entrepreneur's hopes of a coal comeback. Tinkler, a former pit electrician who became Australia's youngest billionaire before losing it all when coal prices crashed, had hoped to turn around his fortunes with the Wilkie Creek purchase.His Singapore-based Bentley Resources made a non-refundable payment for the mine when it agreed to the cash-and-debt deal in May but subsequently missed instalments, Peabody said.Peabody said Bentley had been unable to meet its obligations to close the deal and said it was "evaluating its alternatives" for the closed coal mine in Queensland's Surat Basin.The deal for $70 million cash plus assumption of $60 million in liabilities had come as a surprise to bankers and analysts, who knew that Peabody had wanted well over $500 million for the mine when it was put on the block more than two years ago.

Peabody Energy Corporation (Peabody) is a private-sector coal company. Shares of BTU traded higher by 1.14% or $0.18/share to $15.97. In the past year, the shares have traded as low as $14.85 and as high as $21.28. On average, 6424320 shares of BTU exchange hands on a given day and today's volume is recorded at 4942203.