Billionaire investor Carl Icahn put an end today to all rumors and speculations that he has accumulated a large position in Peabody Energy Corporation (NYSE:BTU). Icahn said that his firm doesn’t own even one share of Peabody Energy, nor does he intend to take a position in the stock.
Earlier in the session, Peabody Energy Corp. (NYSE:BTU) shares soared 6.65 to $21.29 amid speculations that Carl Icahn has taken a large position in the company. It was the biggest stock movement among large coal players. But after Icahn came out with the clarification, the stock pared gains and traded 1.90 percent up to $20.36.
The hedge fund manager said that he doesn’t usually talk about his stakes, but he is tired of rumors. Many equity analysts and message boards cited a large position by Carl Icahn as the reason behind Peabody Energy Corp. (NYSE:BTU)’s gains today, reports Anna Prior of the Wall Street Journal. Coal stocks have become increasingly volatile as power plants continue to switch to cheaper natural gas. Rising costs, global economic slowdown and increased environmental regulations have all added to the challenges for coal producers. Exports, too, are no longer equally promising.
Carl Icahn’s Boardroom Battles
Icahn has been involved in several corporate battles over the past few months. He is fighting billionaire hedge fund manager Bill Ackman over the legitimacy of the nutritional supplement maker Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF). Ackman has accumulated a $1 billion short position in Herbalife, calling it a pyramid scheme.
Carl Icahn is also battling Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners who have proposed to take Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) private by offering $13.65 per share of the computer maker. Icahn already has a large stake in the company, and he argued that Silver Lake’s offer undervalues the stock.
Another corporate boardroom battle is being waged against the management of Transocean LTD (NYSE:RIG). Icahn said in an SEC filing that the company has underperformed its peers and generated poor shareholder returns. It was due to the “shameless inability” of the company management to accept responsibilities.
Fall of Peabody Energy
Peabody Energy Corp (NYSE:BTU) shares are down 24 percent so far this year. Over the past five years, the stock has lost almost 75 percent of its value. Last month, the company reported first quarter losses due to falling per ton revenues from its Australian operations and fewer shipments.
Peabody Energy Corp. (NYSE:BTU) shares last traded at $20.24 at 3:19 PM EDT.