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Pike River Rises Most in Six Months on Coal Outlook

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Oct. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Pike River Coal Co., which operates a mine on New Zealand’s South Island, rose the most in six months in Wellington trading amid an increase in production.

The company has met an initial target of producing 1,000 metric tons of coal from its hydro-mining system, which uses a high pressure water cannon, and continues to increase daily production, the Wellington-based company said in a statement. The stock rose 6.2 percent, the biggest gain since April 9.

Pike River, which mines near Greymouth, said the hydro-mining target was achieved a week late because of lightning strikes that affected power supplies. A second target of achieving 790 meters of access roadway was met and the first of the mine ventilation fans is also in commissioning, it said.

The company is continuing to evaluate the progress with the roadway and hydro-extraction performance against current full-year forecasts, it said.

Pike River shares rose 7 cents to NZ$1.20 at the 5 p.m. market close in Wellington. The stock has gained 30 percent the past three months, four times the pace of the NZX 50 index.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tracy Withers in Wellington at twithers@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Iain Wilson iwilson2@bloomberg.net

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