Nick Carter (President NRP) will meet Global Hunter Securities analysts tomorrow. On May 20th at a meeting with another analyst group, Nick Carter called this, "the worst coal market of my lifetime". Since then, the coal market has gotten worse. Nick Carter also said, "a change in met coal usage in Europe or Asia would have a profound impact on NRP". The change has been for the worse. Would imagine that Nick Carter will talk a lot about diversification tomorrow. The coal news is much worse than it was on May 20th.
Listen in tomorrow if you can (hope you can tune in, jrad).
The presentation was mostly a waste of time. It was very general and introductory in nature. It did not discuss the problems facing coal in any way. It did, however, make so comment about Trona that might be interesting.
Most of the discussion about coal was not worth much – he said that coal was the fastest growing fossil fuel, world-wide, in 2011. He stressed the growing exports to India and China. I didn’t hear him even mention coal usage or pricing in the US; he certainly didn’t discuss the issues. He never mentioned any of the warnings that the company gave earlier this year about coal lessees cutting back and maybe closing mines.
Anyway, what he did say about Trona (the soda ash JV that NRP invested in earlier this year) – Yahoo is making me shorten this post - iif the deal had been in effect in 2012, NRP's share of OCI's profits would have been $ 50 million.(He didn't give this number; you have to compute it based on what he said.) The notes issued by NRP to finance the deal are floaters with a low interest rate (2.3% at closing). I'm sure the rate is going up, but still I think that Trona could add maybe 75 cents to NRP’s annual earnings, if 2012 was a typical year. So the $ 300 million Trona investment looks like a good deal, especially if NRP would tell us how long-lived OCI's reserves are.
As to the BRP JV, with the 9 million acres of mineral rights that NRP shares with IP – his comments were pretty funny. A slide listed all the wonderful things that may be on the acreage, including precious metals (?), and then he added that all these things supported the price that NRP paid for its piece, and maybe more. NRP only paid $ 42 million for this investment, so I guess they don’t expect to find too much on the acreage if the best he could say is that the minerals supported the price NRP paid.