Top Analyst Digs Coal Stocks

Andrew Fisher

Coal is hot.  That's how FBR managing director and energy analyst David Khani sees it, with the global demand for coal even reviving what once looked like a dormant mining industry in the eastern United States.

"The export market into Asia and Europe is very, very strong, and it is in a multi-year uptrend," he told CNBC.  "Supply is not keeping up with demand abroad.

So which companies are best positioned to take advantage of that demand?

"We just moved our top picks to Arch Coal, because the first phase in the coal cycle has been the eastern coal run, and now the second phase is going to be the move in the Powder River Basin [in Wyoming], and that's going to favor Arch," Khani said.

He still likes Consol Energy, too.  Consol has a much bigger share of its interests in the eastern region.

"The east move is not over," he said.