Euro Coal-Prices dip again in line with weaker oil
* Nov S.African trades at $87/T FOB
* Newcastle trades at $86.50-$92/T
LONDON, Sept 19 (Reuters) - Prompt coal prices slipped around 25-50 U.S. cents a tonne lower on Wednesday in line with weaker oil.
Prices for both delivered Europe and FOB Richards Bay cargoes have been range-bound between $83-$89 a tonne for some weeks with high inventories in Europe and minimal spot demand globally weighing on prompt prices.
"The bid-offer spreads are narrower today (Wednesday) than earlier in the week but very little has traded, people are too uncertain," one European trader said.
Oil fell to a six-week low on Wednesday as the market digested comments from Saudi Arabia that it would take action to keep prices in check, raising expectations of increased supply .
Weekly data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed U.S. crude stocks rose far higher than expected by 8.5 million barrels, which triggered further selling.
Sentiment in the coal market is split between those players who believe the market has hit the bottom of its slide since June and those who believe fundamentals remain too weak in the very short-term to prevent further price erosion.
This difference of opinion ought to translate into more trades but this is not happening yet.
Players who have lost money in what has been a difficult and volatile market, are reluctant to risk making more losses if they call the market wrongly, traders said.
Coal tends to lag moves in oil, particularly when the coal market sees few trades or fresh data to give it direction.
Two November loading South African cargoes traded at $87.00 a tonne FOB Richards Bay, unchanged from Tuesday.
Several Q4 loading parcels of Australian coal traded at $86.50-$92/T FOB Newcastle, unchanged.
An October loading South African cargo was bid at $84.25 and offered at $85.40, up 50 cents on the bid but down $2.50 on the offer.
A November South African cargo was bid at $86.50, having traded earlier twice at $87.
An October delivery DES ARA cargo was bid at $84.50 and offered at $87.75, down 25 cents on the offer but over $2.00 down on the bid level.
A November DES ARA cargo was offered at $89.25, down 25 cents. (Reporting by Jacqueline Cowhig; Editing by Anthony Barker)
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