China Coal Energy is likely to price shares close to the top of its US$0.41-0.52 indicative range in its Hong Kong IPO on the back of strong demand from institutional and retail investors, the South China Morning Post reported. One source close to the deal said retail investors have placed orders for 150 times the number of shares available to them. China Coal, the nation's second-largest coal miner, hopes to raise up to US$1.685 billion from the IPO. The price range indicates a valuation of 11.5 times to 14.6 times 2006 forecast earnings, higher than Shenhua Energy's 13.7 times and Yanzhou Coal's 10 times. The share sale is being run by China International Capital Corp, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley. Trading is set to begin on December 22.