Whitehaven coal investors shy away from Tinkler

Speculation around the future of Nathan Tinkler’s stake in Whitehaven Coal has caused investors to shy away from the company says managing director Tony Haggarty.

Haggarty said it would be “ideal” for Whitehaven if Tinkler sold his stake to institutional investors.

Whitehaven Coal was forced into a trading halt on Monday after a fake press release resulted in $314 million being wiped off the company's value.

The fake release, produced by activist group Font Line Action on Coal, purported to be from ANZ and claimed the bank had withdrawn a recent $1.2 billion loan to help develop the Maules Creek project.

Haggarty also said the company would reduce its 75 per cent holding in the Maules Creek project by 5 per cent if the right coal client were to buy in, news.com.au reported.

"There's an opportunity there for us to introduce another partner," Haggarty said.

"The right reason would be about underpinning the offtake."

Tinkler’s financial position has been hurled into the spotlight over the last few months after a number of his companies have been placed into administration and a series of his assets seized.

Whitehaven’s share price recovered once the press release was revealed to be a hoax.

The ASX has now launched an investigation into the elaborate prank.

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