OMAHA (DTN) -- Retail fertilizer prices tracked by DTN for the second week of December 2016 continue to show fertilizer prices in no strong pattern. While prices have moved both higher and lower for some nutrients compared to a month ago, the movement is slight.
Half of the eight major fertilizers nudged higher in the past month although again none by any substantial amount. The four higher were potash with an average price of $320/ton, urea $333/ton, UAN28 $219/ton and UAN32 $257/ton.
The remaining half of fertilizers were lower, although all moves were within our margin of error. DAP averaged $433/ton, MAP $443/ton, 10-34-0 $444/ton and anhydrous $463/ton.
On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.36/lb.N, anhydrous $0.28/lb.N, UAN28 $0.39/lb.N and UAN32 $0.40/lb.N.
The multi-year collapse in prices that has pushed many nutrients to seven-year or worse lows continues to prompt industry consolidation.
Vale SA, a Brazilian mining company, announced Monday it will sell most of its fertilizer business to U.S.-based The Mosaic Company for $2.5 billion, according to a Dow Jones report. The acquisition represents a key foothold in the one of the world's largest fertilizer markets for Mosaic and it should also help feed existing distribution networks in Brazil.
"If you want to grow in agriculture and fertilizers it has to be in Brazil," Floris Bielder, Mosaic's Brazil president, said.
For Vale, the deal brings an end the one-time hopes of capitalizing on global population growth by producing fertilizers. The company identified fertilizer ingredients as a strategically important business several years back, but it just never got off the ground, accounting for just 8% of Vale's overall revenue in the third quarter and posting negative earnings before interest and taxes.
Rumors have swirled for months that Mosaic could be in line to purchase the fertilizer business from Vale. Back in mid-November at The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) Fertilizer Outlook and Technology conference held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the sale of Brazilian fertilizer businesses was a topic of discussion.
Blake Hurtik, Argus FMB editor, said at the time that consolidation in the Brazilian fertilizer business could be on tap in the near future. He cited recent fertilizer company sales in the South American country and even had a graphic in his presentation with the Vale logo with a question mark after it.
There is no question any longer with this announcement on Monday.
Retail fertilizers are lower compared to a year earlier. All fertilizers are now double-digits lower.
Urea is now down 15%, both DAP and MAP are 19% less expensive and UAN28 is 21% less expensive. Potash, 10-34-0 and UAN32 are all three 22% lower while anhydrous is 24% lower compared to a year prior.
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 price 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):
|Dec 14-18 2015||532||544||410||392|
|Jan 11-15 2016||495||521||391||381|
|Feb 8-12 2016||479||499||378||369|
|Mar 7-11 2016||477||494||372||378|
|Apr 4-8 2016||480||504||369||387|
|May 2-6 2016||475||502||366||385|
|May 30-June 3 2016||473||499||363||375|
|June 27-July 1 2016||468||495||358||365|
|July 25-29 2016||459||492||356||356|
|Aug 22-26 2016||451||468||330||330|
|Sept 19-23 2016||443||453||319||323|
|Oct 17-21 2016||436||452||313||317|
|Nov 14-18 2016||436||445||315||327|
|Dec 12-16 2016||433||443||320||333|
|Dec 14-18 2015||571||612||279||331|
|Jan 11-15 2016||572||581||272||319|
|Feb 8-12 2016||569||551||261||303|
|Mar 7-11 2016||562||541||262||312|
|Apr 4-8 2016||561||586||272||315|
|May 2-6 2016||560||589||274||321|
|May 30-June 3 2016||559||579||268||313|
|June 27-July 1 2016||554||566||266||304|
|July 25-29 2016||543||545||257||304|
|Aug 22-26 2016||502||515||234||280|
|Sept 19-23 2016||470||494||225||271|
|Oct 17-21 2016||453||475||224||265|
|Nov 14-18 2016||445||466||219||256|
|Dec 12-16 2016||444||463||219||257|
Russ Quinn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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