Consol Energy: S&P Intraday Laggard

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Coal and natural gas company Consol Energy ( CNX) was the worst performer in the S&P 500 intraday Tuesday.

The S&P 500 was down 18.42 points, or 1.35%, to 1,345.91.

Shares of Consol Energy fell 3.72% midday Tuesday to $32.11. The company announced Tuesday that it is going to temporarily idle the Viriginia Buchanan longwall mining unit and cut its operation schedule down to five days a week. The length of time for the idling wasn't known; the reduction in production should be about 295,000 tons a month.

Consol Energy is idling the unit because of reduced international demand for metallurgical coal and higher inventories.

Shares of Consol Energy hit a 52-week low Tuesday of $29.85. The stock's 52-week high of $56.32 was set on March 18.

Consol Energy has an estimated price-to-earnings ratio for next year of 10.12 times; the average for coal companies is 10.96. For comparison, Peabody Energy ( BTU) has a lower forward P/E of 6.69; Alpha Natural Resources' ( ANR) forward P/E is 20.34.

Twenty-seven of the 31 analysts who cover Consol Energy rated it buy; four analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives Consol a B- grade with a buy rating and $40.73 price target. The stock has fallen 12.45% year to date.

-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian

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