Potash Corp profit, outlook up; shares rise
By Euan Rocha
TORONTO (Reuters) - Potash Corp of Saskatchewan reported stronger than expected quarterly earnings on Thursday and raised its earnings forecast due to a sharp rebound in potash demand, and its shares rose 1.4 percent.
Shares of Potash, the world's biggest fertilizer producer, were buoyed by talk that China's first imports of corn from the United States in nearly four years could be followed by more shipments.
"The fact that the slide in corn prices has probably stopped for now with China in the market, that is definitely helping (market/farmer) psychology," said Broadpoint AmTech analyst Edlain Rodriguez. "As there is a high co-relation between corn prices and fertilizer stocks."
Chicago Board of Trade corn for May delivery rose almost 2.5 percent to $3.66 per bushel by 11 a.m. (1500 GMT) after surging nearly 3 percent on Wednesday on news of China's purchases. The reversal of a negative trend in price of corn helped boost shares of Potash Corp and those of its North American rivals.
Potash Corp's shares were up $1.49 at $110.5 on the New York Stock Exchange. Shares of rivals Mosaic Co, Agrium Inc and CF Industries also rose in early trade
Potash Corp's shares had fallen more than 4 percent in pre-market trade on Thursday due to initial market disappointment with the company's outlook.
OUTLOOK FALLS SHORT
The company raised its full-year earnings forecast to a range of $4.50 to $5.25 a share. Its previous forecast was $4.00 to $5.00 a share.. Continued...