Commenting on ARLP’s outlook Mr. Craft said, "Assuming normal weather patterns and continued strength in natural gas prices, we expect U.S. steam coal demand will grow in 2013 - removing the current inventory overhang and setting the stage for higher spot coal prices in the second half of 2013. The exact timing and magnitude of these market improvements will be affected by the strength of the economy, both global and domestic. We expect ARLP's coal production and sales volumes in 2013 to increase 11.0% to 13.0% over 2012 levels. With over 95.0% of these estimated volumes priced and committed, ARLP is on track to again deliver solid cash flow growth in 2013 and build on our record of distribution increases to our unitholders."
Reflecting the impact of idling Pontiki in the 2012 Quarter and the estimated cost of returning the mine to production by year end, ARLP is revising its full-year 2012 guidance. ARLP is currently anticipating 2012 production volumes in a range of 34.4 to 34.9 million tons and sales volumes of 34.8 to 35.2 million tons. ARLP has secured sales commitments for essentially all of its 2012 coal sales volumes and for approximately 37.1 million tons, 29.8 million tons and 22.8 million tons in 2013, 2014 and 2015, respectively, of which approximately 2.9 million tons in both 2014 and 2015 remain open to market pricing.
For 2012, ARLP is now anticipating full-year revenues, excluding transportation revenues, in a range of $1.95 to $2.05 billion, Adjusted EBITDA of $565.0 to $580.0 million and net income of $300.0 to $315.0 million. Consolidated estimates for 2012 continue to reflect the pass through of development expenses related to ARLP’s White Oak investments, which are now estimated in a range of $12.0 to $16.0 million for both EBITDA and net income. (For a definition of EBITDA Adjusted EBTIDA and related reconciliations to comparable GAAP financial measures, please see the end of this release.)
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