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Peabody Posts Q4 Profit; Initiates Quarterly Dividend

Peabody Energy Corp. (BTU) reported that its net income attributable to common stockholders totaled $317.4 million for the fourth-quarter of 2017. Net loss for the fourth-quarter of 2016 was $192.7 million. The latest-quarter result included $40.9 million of non-cash preferred stock dividends, reflecting the impact of 9 percent voluntary preferred conversions during the quarter and the semi-annual preferred dividend.

Peabody announced the initiation of a quarterly dividend, demonstrating the company's strong financial position, cash flow generation profile and commitment to shareholder returns.

Fourth quarter income from continuing operations, net of income taxes totaled $378.0 million, reflecting $178.8 million of depreciation, depletion and amortization; $83.1 million of gains on disposals (excluded from Adjusted EBITDA); net mark-to-market gain on actuarially determined liabilities of $45.2 million; and $35.9 million of interest expense.

Revenues for the fourth quarter increased 5 percent over the prior year to $1.52 billion on continued robust seaborne pricing and 4 percent higher Australian export volumes, leading to Australia's largest quarterly revenue contribution in five years.

The company noted that most income statement measures were not comparable with prior-year periods due to the adoption of fresh-start reporting as of April 1, 2017.

Peabody announced that its board of directors has declared a quarterly dividend of $0.115 per share on the company's common stock, payable on March 5, 2018 to shareholders of record on February 19, 2018.

"Peabody is pleased to initiate a quarterly dividend program as an important next step in the company's commitment to shareholder returns, while further demonstrating the company's strong financial position and robust cash generation potential," said Peabody President and Chief Executive Officer Glenn Kellow.

The Peabody board of directors will evaluate dividends on a quarterly basis, taking into consideration the company's cash flows and alternative means to create shareholder value.

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