Coal stocks are a great opportunity for casual investors to delve into commodities. Coal is used for a wide range of purposes, but most uses take advantage of the possibilities of alternative fuel that can be harnessed from coal when it is burned. Mining companies process the coal, and get it ready to be used as a source of energy for travel or some other means of use. Most brokers that invest in coal stocks are actually buying holdings in coal mining companies, but some purchase stake in coal as a mineral. The average coal mining corporations are very low risk and low reward, but some, like ADR, YZC, and CNE have been trending upward for the past few semesters. While coal mining is becoming more and more outdated, there are a few options not only located in the United States, but also in Asian nations and South American nations, that are still exceeding the expectations of this dwindling industry.