AMERICAN mining giant Peabody is being dragged down by its Australian coal arm - including seven mines in Central Queensland - which is hard-hit by struggling international prices.
For its end-of-2013 results, Peabody reported depressed coal prices were responsible for a 22% fall in prices per ton of coal.
Peabody had to fork out an extra US$100 million thanks to the delayed underground longwall being developed at its North Goonyella mine west of Mackay and industrial action at its Metropolitan mine in New South Wales.
Over the course of the year, the American miner improved its savings and production by changing owner-operator arrangements.
Peabody chief Gregory Boyce said he was optimistic about what the new year would hold for coal saying he expected the "record coal use" to continue, particularly in developing nations.