OMAHA (DTN) -- For the second straight week, average retail fertilizer prices were mixed the first week of June 2018, according to sellers contacted by DTN. Following a historical seasonal trend, the softening prices appear to be due to lower demand as the fertilizer application season is generally wrapping up in many parts of the Corn Belt.
Half of the eight major fertilizer were slightly lower in price compared to last month. MAP had an average price of $505 per ton, urea $364/ton, anhydrous $503/ton and UAN28 $241/ton.
Prices for three fertilizers were slightly higher than they were the previous month. DAP had an average price of $484/ton, potash $354/ton and 10-34-0 $440/ton.
In addition, one fertilizer's price was unchanged from a month earlier. UAN32 had an average price of $276/ton.
On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.40/lb.N, anhydrous $0.31/lb.N, UAN28 $0.43/lb.N and UAN32 $0.43/lb.N.
With retail fertilizer prices declining some in recent weeks, I thought it might be interesting to compare current prices with retail prices in three different periods. We will look back at three months ago, five months ago and seven months ago.
Three months earlier is the first week of March 2018. The differences between prices then and now (first week of June 2018) are in a fairly small range. DAP is $21 per ton more expensive and 10-34-0 is $18 per ton higher, but prices for the rest of the fertilizers are only a single-digit higher. One fertilizer, urea, is even slightly less expensive now compared to the first week of March.
Five months ago is the first week of January 2018, the first week of the new year. The price difference per ton is a little more noticeable than when we compare to three months earlier.
Potash only has a single-digit difference ($9/ton more), but the rest of the fertilizers are double-digits more expensive. Urea was $14/ton more, MAP $15/ton, UAN32 $20/ton, UAN28 $22/ton, anhydrous $29/ton, 10-34-0 $31/ton and DAP $32/ton.
Now let's go back seven months to the first week of November 2017; this is when retail fertilizer prices were just starting their climb higher. At this point, there are larger price differences.
Two fertilizers had slight differences. UAN32 is only $4/ton higher while potash is $13/ton more expensive when comparing the two time periods. Differences for the remaining fertilizers are: UAN28 is $25/ton more, urea is $26/ton higher, 10-34-0 $37/ton higher, MAP $46/ton higher, DAP $50/ton higher and anhydrous is $94/ton more.
The take-home message here is retail fertilizer prices have started to decline, but they still have a way to go to get back to the price levels that were seen in the first week of November 2017. It will be interesting to see what occurs in the coming weeks and months.
Six of the eight major fertilizers are now higher compared to last year. Both 10-34-0 and anhydrous are now up 1%, potash is 4% higher, MAP and urea are 8% more expensive and DAP is 11% more expensive compared to last year.
The remaining two fertilizers are lower in price compared to a year prior. UAN32 is 1% lower, while UAN28 is 2% less expensive.
DTN collects roughly 1,700 retail fertilizer bids from 310 retailer locations weekly. Not all fertilizer prices change each week. Prices are subject to change at any time.
DTN Pro Grains subscribers can find current retail fertilizer prices in the DTN Fertilizer Index on the Fertilizer page under Farm Business.
Retail fertilizer charts dating back to 2010 are available in the DTN fertilizer segment. The charts included cost of N/lb., DAP, MAP, potash, urea, 10-34-0, anhydrous, UAN28 and UAN32.
DTN's average of retail fertilizer prices from a month earlier ($ per ton):
|Jun 5-9 2017||438||469||339||338|
|Jul 3-7 2017||436||467||339||325|
|Jul 31-Aug 4 2017||434||463||339||311|
|Aug 28-Sept 1 2017||433||457||338||303|
|Sep 15-29 2017||432||453||348||321|
|Oct 23-27 2017||431||453||347||325|
|Nov 20-24 2017||435||460||342||338|
|Dec 18-22 2017||445||485||344||348|
|Jan 15-19 2018||456||491||345||355|
|Feb 12-16 2018||457||495||345||357|
|Mar 12-16 2018||466||503||350||368|
|Apr 9-13 2018||482||504||353||369|
|May 7-11 2018||483||505||354||366|
|Jun 4-8 2018||484||505||354||364|
|Jun 5-9 2017||435||503||246||278|
|Jul 3-7 2017||432||462||236||268|
|Jul 31-Aug 4 2017||426||418||227||262|
|Aug 28-Sept 1 2017||418||417||215||248|
|Sep 15-29 2017||413||396||208||243|
|Oct 23-27 2017||407||393||205||262|
|Nov 20-24 2017||403||410||216||272|
|Dec 18-22 2017||405||461||218||254|
|Jan 15-19 2018||407||485||226||260|
|Feb 12-16 2018||415||492||230||264|
|Mar 12-16 2018||421||503||237||282|
|Apr 9-13 2018||427||510||241||275|
|May 7-11 2018||431||512||241||276|
|Jun 4-8 2018||440||503||241||276|
Russ Quinn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow him on Twitter @RussQuinnDTN
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