The fertilizer sector has experienced renewed enthusiasm this year. Most fertilizer prices have seen a significant improvement year-over-year. Urea has increased as much as 30% in the NOLA (New Orleans) region of the US. The overall crop nutrient prices have gained, which has dampened fertilizer affordability in 2018. However, these movements are good news for the fertilizer industry.
In the above chart, you can see that CF Industries (CF) emerged as the top gainer and outperformed its peers. CF Industries has returned as much as 29% YTD (year-to-date) as of October 2. The company also received several target price upgrades. The latest upgrade was from UBS on October 2.
Mosaic (MOS) is also among the top gainers. Mosaic stock has risen 24% YTD, while Nutrien (NTR) has gained 6%. In contrast, FMC (FMC) has declined 6% YTD. The stock was dragged down by FMC’s lithium division.
The VanEck Vectors Agribusiness ETF (MOO) has returned 6% YTD, while the S&P 500 Index (SPY) has returned 8% YTD.
In this October update series, we’ll discuss the latest ratings and target prices for the agribusiness stocks discussed above. First, we’ll see how analysts rate CF Industries.