Friday, January 4, 2013

Mosaic Beats Reduced Expectations, Predicts Sharp Drop in Potash Prices (MOS; POT)

So much for Jeremy Grantham's "The End of Fertilizer" thesis.
From our December 10 post "Vaclav Smil Takes on Jeremy Grantham Over Peak Fertilizer":
We posted the whole of Mr. Grantham's Nov. 15 Nature piece for fear it would go behind Nature's paywall.
To date it hasn't. Also to date I haven't come through on my assurance in Nov. 24ths "Jeremy Grantham "On the Road to Zero Growth" as His Co-head of Asset Allocation Does the Full Monty". I promise I'll get to it.

We have almost as many posts on Professor Smil as we do on Mr. Grantham. This is the first time they've been together. I feel very uncomfortable being on the opposite side of Mr. G on just about anything but in this case Smil is right....
From Reuters:
Mosaic oper profit falls as international distributors delay purchase
Mosaic Co's quarterly operating profit fell 30 percent as international distributors delayed buying potash and phosphate to avert the price risk associated with the fertilizer producer's negotiations with China and India.
"International shipments, however, were impacted by prolonged contract negotiations in India and China," Chief Executive Jim Prokopanko said in a statement.

Operating earnings for the second quarter fell 30 percent to $560 million, from $797 million a year earlier.
The company reported a net income, including tax benefits, of $629 million, or $1.47 per share, for the second quarter ended on Nov. 30, up from $624 million, or $1.40 per share, a year earlier.

Revenue declined 17 percent to $2.5 billion.
And from Agrimoney:
Mosaic foresees sharp drop in potash sales prices
Mosaic forecast a sharp drop in its potash sales prices, but a pick-up in volumes, after Monday's long-awaited Chinese import deal, which ended uncertainties fuelling a 30% drop in operating profits in the latest quarter.
The US-based fertilizer giant said that the price it achieved for potash would average $370-400 a tonne in the December-to-February period, a drop of at least 12% year on year....MORE