Why Vale SA (VALE) Stock Hit a One-Year Low Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Vale SA  (VALE) dropped to a 52-week low of $11.17 on Thursday after Doyle Trading announced the quarterly price for metallurgical coal had fallen to a six-year low.

Australian coal producers and Japanese steel mills agreed to a fourth-quarter price of $119 a metric ton, down from $120 in the third quarter, according to the Colorado-based consultants. Worldwide oversupply and a drop in Chinese demand for the steel ingredient sent the price to the new low.

The settlement is a blow to hope for a rebound in metallurgical coal prices, which have plunged 64% since they hit $330 a metric ton in 2011.

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More than 29.6 million shares changed hands as of 3:52 p.m., compared to the average volume of 19,389,000.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates VALE SA as a "hold" with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate VALE SA (VALE) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed - some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, increase in net income and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and disappointing return on equity."

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