DTN Retail Fertilizer Trends

Tue. Jul 07, 2015 3:59 PM

By Russ Quinn
DTN Staff Reporter

OMAHA (DTN) -- Average retail fertilizer prices remained fairly steady the last week of June 2015, according to fertilizer retailers surveyed by DTN. No fertilizer prices were substantially lower or higher compared to a month earlier.

Seven of the eight major fertilizers were slightly lower in price compared to a month prior. DAP had an average price of $570 per ton, MAP $596/ton, potash $490/ton, 10-34-0 $642/ton, anhydrous $705/ton, UAN28 $330/ton and UAN32 $369/ton.

One fertilizer was higher compared to the previous month, but the move was minor. Urea had an average price of $469 per ton.

On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.51/lb.N, anhydrous $0.43/lb.N, UAN28 $0.59/lb.N and UAN32 $0.58/lb.N.

U.S. farmers face their fair share of challenges when purchasing fertilizer to raise crops. Canadian farmers have to deal with these issues along with fluctuations in the Canadian dollar, according to Phillip Shaw, a Dresden, Ontario, Canada farmer, speaker and DTN contributing analyst.

The fluctuation in the Canada dollar affects Canadian farmers in all aspects of their businesses from selling grain and livestock to buying inputs and farm machinery. A falling Canadian dollar causes grain prices to rise but also pushes input prices, such as fertilizer, higher.

"The drop in our loonie (Canadian dollar) causes big price increases regardless of U.S. price movements," Shaw told DTN. "It just adds another layer of management decision for the Canadian farmer."

Issues with currency is the third leg of the stool which Canadian farmers deal with. The other two legs are cash prices and futures. American farmers do not face these currency issues as much but are becoming more aware of currency concerns as agriculture becomes more global, Shaw said.

Shaw said despite these currency issues, Canadian farmers still need to buy fertilizer and many Ontario farmers will pre-order fertilizer, usually in the winter months and some at the end of the year for tax purposes. On his own farm, he normally doesn't lock in fertilizer prices, but he has in the past. Larger operators pre-purchase their fertilizer needs, he said

"With inputs subject to swings in the Canadian dollar movement, it certainly does make locking in fertilizer or any inputs more difficult," he said.

Only one of the eight major fertilizers is double digits higher in price compared to June 2014, all while commodity prices are significantly lower from a year ago. 10-34-0 is still 14% higher compared to last year.

Two fertilizers are slightly more expensive compared to a year earlier. Anhydrous is 2% higher while potash is 1% more expensive compared to last year.

The remaining five nutrients are now lower compared to retail prices from a year ago. Both DAP and MAP are 4% less expensive, UAN28 is down 6%, UAN32 is now 8% less expensive and urea is 12% less expensive from a year previous.

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 November 2008 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
June 30-July 4 2014 592 623 483 535
July 28-Aug 1 2014 587 610 476 519
August 25-29 2014 585 602 475 517
Sept 22-26 2014 579 600 473 510
Oct 20-24 2014 582 599 478 507
Nov 17-21 2014 576 595 480 493
Dec 15-19 2014 565 592 483 461
Jan 12-16 2015 566 594 486 465
Feb 9-13 2015 569 597 488 473
Mar 9-13 2015 570 597 489 471
Apr 6-Apr 10 2015 570 598 491 461
May 4-8 2015 570 598 491 457
June 1-5 2015 570 598 491 461
June 29-July 3 2015 570 596 490 469
LIQUID
Date Range 10-34-0 ANHYD UAN28 UAN32
June 30-July 4 2014 564 694 352 400
July 28-Aug 1 2014 542 671 339 380
August 25-29 2014 555 699 332 371
Sept 22-26 2014 555 694 329 377
Oct 20-24 2014 557 697 327 367
Nov 17-21 2014 560 709 322 366
Dec 15-19 2014 572 705 322 362
Jan 12-16 2015 582 710 325 364
Feb 9-13 2015 589 707 330 370
Mar 9-13 2015 626 706 331 371
Apr 6-Apr 10 2015 648 709 333 370
May 4-8 2015 653 711 331 371
June 1-5 2015 650 710 331 371
June 29-July 3 2015 642 705 330 369

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

(AG)

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