Feb 19 (Reuters) - Mosaic Co, the world’s largest producer of finished phosphate products, on Monday reported a 12 percent rise in net sales driven by higher potash and phosphates prices.
Plymouth, Minnesota-based Mosaic sold 2.5 million tonnes of diammonium phosphate in the fourth quarter at an average price of $348 per tonne, up from $317 per tonne a year earlier.
The U.S. fertilizer company’s average potash selling price was $188 per tonne, up from $169 a year ago. The segment’s total sales volumes for the quarter were 2.2 million tonnes, versus 2 million tonnes last year.
This pushed net sales up to $2.09 billion from $1.86 billion a year ago.
“We are seeing improving market conditions in both potash and phosphates, which, combined with benefits from our actions across our three business units, puts Mosaic in an excellent position to create value for all of our stakeholders,” Chief Executive James “Joc” O’Rourke said in a statement.
The company sees potash sales volumes in the range of 1.7 million tonnes to 2 million tonnes for the first quarter. Phosphates sales are expected in the range of 1.9 million tonnes to 2.2 million tonnes for the same period.
Fertilizer prices have rebounded in the past year, but rapid expansion of phosphate and potash production capacity has limited gains.
The company reported net loss of $431.1 million, or $1.23 per share, for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, from a profit of $12 million, or 3 cents per share a year ago.
Mosaic’s fourth-quarter earnings were hurt by a $458 million non-cash charge related to changes in U.S. tax legislation. (Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; editing by Grant McCool)