DTN Retail Fertilizer Trends

By Russ Quinn
DTN Staff Reporter

OMAHA (DTN) — For the second straight week, retail fertilizer prices are showing significant movement after five months of holding mostly steady, according to fertilizer retailers surveyed by DTN. Prices for all eight of the major fertilizers were lower the second week of July 2017 compared to a month earlier.

As the fertilizer application season wraps up for this growing season, retail prices are beginning to decrease with lower demand.

Anhydrous is 10% lower compared to last month while urea is 5% less expensive. Anhydrous had an average price of $451 per ton while urea was at $321/ton.

The remaining six fertilizers had just slightly lower prices compared to last month. DAP had an average price of $436/ton, MAP $467/ton, potash $340/ton, 10-34-0 $431/ton, UAN28 $235/ton and UAN32 $268/ton.

On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.35/lb.N, anhydrous $0.28/lb.N, UAN28 $0.42/lb.N and UAN32 $0.42/lb.N.

Retailers report fertilizer prices are pushing lower as the application season wraps up and as retailers prepare to refill their fertilizer stocks. Steve Lias, general manager of Farmers Elevator Company located in Humboldt, South Dakota, told DTN nitrogen products in particular are moving lower right now.

"I think we are seeing urea and other nitrogen products significantly lower because of the new domestic supplies we now have in place," Lias said. "We pull from Port Neal’s (Iowa) new facilities, and we do our own hauling now."

Lias said he thinks some retailers may hold off on their summer fill activities for a bit just to see how low prices fall. The danger of this, of course, is prices could always go the other direction, he said.

Longer term, Lias said, he believes nitrogen does not have much upside pressure while phosphorus fertilizers could hang around at their current levels.

"I think if there is one fertilizer which could be higher come fall it might be potash," he said. "We are already so low I could easily see a $20-per-ton increase to the price by then."

Prices of all retail fertilizers are lower compared to a year earlier. Five of the eight major fertilizers are double digits lower.

10-34-0 is 20% lower from a year ago while anhydrous is 17% less expensive, UAN32 is 13% lower, UAN28 is 12% less expensive and urea is 11% less expensive. DAP is 7% lower, MAP is 6% less expensive and potash is 5% lower.

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 2010 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
July 11-15 2016 467 496 358 360
Aug 8-12 2016 453 482 344 345
Sept 5-9 2016 446 464 325 325
Oct 3-7 2016 438 451 312 315
Oct 31-Nov 4 2016 436 451 314 319
Nov 28-Dec 2 2016 435 445 318 331
Dec 26-30 2016 431 443 321 336
Jan 23-27 2017 429 443 322 347
Feb 20-24 2017 433 452 332 359
Mar 20-24 2017 438 464 338 356
Apr 17-21 2017 438 466 339 352
May 15-19 2017 437 471 340 350
Jun 12-16 2017 437 470 341 338
Jul 10-14 2017 436 467 340 321
LIQUID
Date Range 10-34-0 ANHYD UAN28 UAN32
July 11-15 2016 538 547 266 306
Aug 8-12 2016 528 522 249 299
Sept 5-9 2016 478 502 228 274
Oct 3-7 2016 454 472 224 263
Oct 31-Nov 4 2016 452 471 244 262
Nov 28-Dec 2 2016 447 465 217 256
Dec 26-30 2016 437 466 217 254
Jan 23-27 2017 436 480 235 268
Feb 20-24 2017 440 490 241 276
Mar 20-24 2017 441 507 248 280
Apr 17-21 2017 437 509 247 280
May 15-19 2017 436 510 248 283
Jun 12-16 2017 435 500 246 278
Jul 10-14 2017 431 451 235 268

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

Follow Russ Quinn on Twitter @RussQuinnDTN

(AG/SK)