DTN Retail Fertilizer Trends

Average Retail Fertilizer Prices Higher Again

Russ Quinn
By  Russ Quinn , DTN Staff Reporter
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During the last two days of February and first three days of March 2017, anhydrous was back above $500 per ton for the first time since the first week of September 2016 when the price was $502 per ton. (DTN chart)

OMAHA (DTN) -- Retail fertilizer prices were still on the rise the last two days of February and first three days of March 2017, though at a slower rate than in previous weeks, according to fertilizer retailers surveyed by DTN. This is the sixth consecutive week prices have moved higher.

For the second week in a row, all eight major fertilizers were higher compared to a month earlier, though none were up by a significant amount.

DAP had an average price of $436 per ton, MAP $458/ton, potash $335/ton and urea $361/ton. 10-34-0 had an average price of $440/ton, anhydrous $502/ton, UAN28 $246/ton and UAN32 $279/ton.

One interesting note is with anhydrous. The nitrogen fertilizer was back above $500 per ton for the first time since the first week of September 2016 when the price was $502/ton.

On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.39/lb.N, anhydrous $0.31/lb.N, UAN28 $0.44/lb.N and UAN32 $0.44/lb.N.

In a mid-February Kansas State University (KSU) AgManager.info online newsletter titled "Predicting Fertilizer Prices," Gregg Ibendahl, KSU ag economist, attempts to find where the retail fertilizer price could be in the near future. The news is not good news for fertilizer buyers.

"Anhydrous ammonia is positively correlated with the corn price and the price of oil because these two products represent something about the demand and supply of anhydrous ammonia fertilizer," Ibendahl wrote. "Economic theory tells us that higher prices for an output will cause producers to produce more by using more of the production inputs. Thus, higher corn prices lead to more nitrogen fertilizer per corn acre."

Looking forward into 2017, farmers are likely to see some increases in fertilizer prices due to higher oil prices, he wrote. With oil prices already around $52 a barrel and the future market indicating mid-summer prices could be in the mid-$50s, a $15 increase in oil prices could add another $30 per ton to anhydrous ammonia prices by fall.

Ibendahl wrote that the other part of the price forecast is whether corn prices increase. A 10-cent-per-bushel change in the national corn price will move the predicted anhydrous ammonia price $4.74 per ton higher, he wrote.

"Other fertilizers are likely to increase during the course of 2017 as well, as there is a strong positive correlation between anhydrous ammonia prices and other fertilizer types," he wrote.

The entire post can be found at https://www.agmanager.info/….

Retail fertilizers are lower compared to a year earlier. Only three of the eight major fertilizer are double digits lower.

10-34-0 is 22% lower from a year ago while UAN32 and potash are both 10% less expensive. DAP is 9% less expensive, both MAP and anhydrous is 7% lower, UAN28 is 6% less expensive and urea is 4% compared to year earlier.

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):

DRY
Date Range DAP MAP POTASH UREA
Feb 29-Mar 4 2016 476 492 373 374
Mar 28-Apr 1 2016 478 501 370 386
Apr 25-29 2016 476 502 366 386
May 23-27 2016 476 501 365 381
June 20-24 2016 470 495 358 366
July 18-22 2016 464 493 357 357
Aug 15-19 2016 452 471 333 337
Sept 12-16 2016 444 458 320 324
Oct 10-14 2016 438 452 313 316
Nov 7-11 2016 429 4049 314 323
Dec 5-9 2016 434 443 318 333
Jan 2-6 2017 431 442 322 339
Jan 30-Feb 3 2017 430 448 329 353
Feb 27-Mar 03 2017 436 458 335 361
LIQUID
Date Range 10-34-0 ANHYD UAN28 UAN32
Feb 29-Mar 4 2016 566 537 260 309
Mar 28-Apr 1 2016 561 580 268 315
Apr 25-29 2016 560 587 274 321
May 23-27 2016 560 587 274 321
June 20-24 2016 554 567 265 305
July 18-22 2016 546 546 260 304
Aug 15-19 2016 513 516 238 285
Sept 12-16 2016 474 496 233 272
Oct 10-14 2016 454 475 224 264
Nov 7-11 2016 447 468 217 256
Dec 5-9 2016 445 463 219 257
Jan 2-6 2017 436 465 218 255
Jan 30-Feb 3 2017 439 482 236 270
Feb 27-Mar 03 2017 440 502 246 279

Russ Quinn can be reached at russ.quinn@dtn.com

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Russ Quinn