Mosaic cuts potash output as demand slumps, lowers outlook

Mon Sep 21, 2015 4:41pm EDT
 
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Sept 21 (Reuters) - U.S. fertilizer company Mosaic Co said on Monday that it would cut potash production and maintain its reduced phosphate output pace, lowering its outlook for sales.

Mosaic shares dipped 2 percent in after-hours trading in New York. They had closed down 1.5 percent at $36.44.

Delayed fertilizer purchases in Brazil and North America have weakened markets, along with volatile currency and equity markets and lower crop prices, Mosaic said in a statement after markets closed.

As a result, the Minnesota-based company said it would extend maintenance downtime at its Colonsay, Saskatchewan potash mine in Western Canada.

"We are managing our production levels to match current demand, controlling our costs, and maintaining our discipline," said Chief Executive Joc O'Rourke, who took over in August.

Mosaic, North America's second-biggest potash producer, said potash volumes for the third quarter are expected to be in the bottom half of its guidance range of 1.6 million to 2 million tonnes. The average selling price for muriate of potash is expected to be in the bottom half of the previously announced range of $260 to $280 per tonne.

The world's largest producer of finished phosphate products said phosphate volumes are expected to be at the low end of its range of 2.1 to 2.4 million tonnes for the third quarter. The average selling price for diammonium phosphate (DAP) is expected to be in the upper half of a range of $435 to $455 per tonne. (Reporting by Rod Nickel in Winnipeg, Manitoba; Editing by Marguerita Choy)