The Colossal Coal Trade

Wednesday, 9 Apr 2008 | 6:44 PM ET

Coal prices have more then doubled in a year. What's behind this booming trade?

BHP Billiton’s coal prices rose from $98/ton to over $300/ton in the past year, explains Dylan Ratigan. That increase was sparked, in part, by the belief that coal might be the best source for power generation in America, especially because we don’t really embrace nuclear power. Is it sustainable?

Yes, exclaims Pete Najarian. Electricity is a big driver of coal demand as well as steel production. In fact some steelmakers have agreed to pay coal producers three times more for coking coal.

How would you trade it?

For a straight play look at the ETF Market Vectors Coal ETF , he says. Or you can look at stock plays, adds Najarian with Alpha Natural and Walter Industries .

Also check out at Mechel , adds Tim Seymour.

You can also go down the line. Look at Burlington Northern and CSX Corp.because they transport coal, says Guy Adami.

The Coal Trade
The Fast Money traders take a look at what's behind the booming coal trade.

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Trader disclosure: On Apr .9, 2008, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Najarian Owns (AAPL), (AMR), (BIIB), (CSCO), (NOK), (TSO), (XLF), (YHOO), (EMC), (WLT); Najarian Owns (CHK) Calls, (COP) Calls, (MSFT) Calls, (SLB) Calls; Najarian Owns (LEH) Puts, (OIH) Puts; Macke Owns (YHOO), (INTC), (DIS), (MSFT); Seymour Owns (AAPL), (BX), (CHL), (CSCO), (INTC), (MSFT), (SBUX), (TSO), (TIE); Seygem Asset Management Owns (COP)

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  • Chief Market Strategist for Virtus Investment Partners & CNBC Contributor

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