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Appalachian coal miner Corsa reports 2015 loss widens to $153M

Appalachiancoal producer Corsa Coal Corp.on March 30 reported its 2015 net loss widened to $153 million despite cost cuttingefforts as coal prices declined and the company sold less tonnage in a year it describedas presenting "unprecedented challenges across the industry."

The Canadian-listedcompany, which produces metallurgical and thermal coal in Northern Appalachia andCentral Appalachia, reported revenues of $129.3 million, compared with $140.5 millionin 2014 as coal sales slipped to 1.5 million tons from 1.6 million tons and averagerealized pricing fell.

Pricesfell most significantly at its Northern Appalachia segment, which produces mainlymet coal used in steelmaking. The company said the worldwide supply glut of metcoal was showing signs of abatingand it was seeing signs of improvement in met coal and steel markets.

"We believe that supply cuts will serve as a catalyst forimproved metallurgical coal pricing in 2016 and expect to see the domestic marketrecover faster than the seaborne market, given the extreme financial distress ofmetallurgical coal producers and the potential for significant supply disruption,"said Corsa CEO George Dethlefsen.

Corsasaid its operating divisions are well positioned to grow in the year ahead withthe ability to expand production once market conditions improve. In the meantime,the company said it is focusing on shaving costs and has sealed several inactivedeep mines in Northern Appalachia and consolidated coal processing plants to helpin this regard.

It continuesto expect full production from the newly developed Cooper Ridge Deep mine in CentralAppalachia during the second quarter of 2016. This mine is expected to strategicallyreposition the Central Appalachian segment into the specialty coal and industrialcoal markets which typically generate premium pricing.

Corsa'sproduction guidance for 2016 assumes Northern Appalachia coal sales of 850,000 toalmost 1.1 million tons and Central Appalachia sales of 675,000 to 775,000 tonsof thermal and industrial coal.