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Comparing Fertilizer Companies’ 4Q17 Sales Performances

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Fertilizer sales

In the earlier part of this series, we discussed the earnings of eight fertilizer companies (XLB). Overall, these companies reported positive year-over-year sales growth, which is indicative of improving market conditions.

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Median growth

The overall 4Q17 median sales growth for the eight fertilizer companies under review grew 3.4% year-over-year. In 4Q16, sales growth fell 10% year-over-year. Out of the eight companies, six reported year-over-year growth in sales compared to just one company, CVR Partners, reporting sales growth last year.

Sales growth by company

Among the eight companies under review, CF Industries (CF) experienced the highest sales growth of ~27% year-over-year to $1.1 billion, which compares with a year-over-year decline of 22% in 4Q16. Mosaic (MOS) experienced 12.4% year-over-year sales growth to $2.1 billion.

Next up was Agrium (AGU) (NTR), which experienced 7.5% year-over-year sales growth of $2.5 billion compared to flat sales growth a year ago. Terra Nitrogen (TNH) also delivered sales growth of 5% year-over-year to $97 million followed by PotashCorp (POT), which delivered 2% sales growth to $1.1 billion. Similarly, Israel Chemicals (ICL) also delivered 1.7% sales growth year-over-year to $1.4 billion.

In contrast to these companies, CVR Partners (UAN) posted a 7.5% year-over-year sales decline to $78 million, and Intrepid Potash (IPI) experienced the steepest sales decline of ~21% to $33 million.

Next, we’ll discuss sales drivers for these companies.

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