Mosaic Co : Mosaic Sees 4Q Sales Volume At High End of Forecast
04/25/2012| 08:43am US/Eastern
Mosaic Co. (>> Mosaic Co) said it expects fiscal fourth-quarter volumes for its potash and phosphate fertilizers at the upper end of its March guidance, citing a rapid acceleration in demand.
Shares were up 4.8% at $52.88 in premarket trading. Through Tuesday's close, the stock is down 34% in the past year.
"Global demand for crop nutrients has increased sharply, driven by an early and strong spring season in North America, combined with increasing shipments to South America," President and Chief Executive Jim Prokopanko said.
The company also expects demand will continue to grow amid strong global economics for the farming sector.
Mosaic last month had projected potash sales volumes of 1.7 million tons to 2.2 million tons and phosphates sales volume of 2.3 million tons to 2.7 million tons. On Wednesday, Mosaic affirmed its guidance for pricing and phosphate segment margins.
Mosaic and other fertilizer producers had been struggling in recent months amid a standoff with customers. Farmer demand had been sluggish amid high prices, and dealers had been slower-than-usual in securing supplies. Mosaic and competitors had curtailed production in response.
Last month, Mosaic had reported that its fiscal third-quarter profit slumped 50% as higher raw-material costs and slow farmer buying cut into margins. The result also faced a tough comparison against earnings a year earlier, when record demand, combined with supply uncertainties, helped lift up the fertilizer market.
-By Tess Stynes, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2481; Tess.Stynes@dowjones.com