Retail fertilizer prices fell for the fourth consecutive week, according to prices tracked by DTN for the first week of September 2019, with nitrogen and phosphate products posting the steepest declines.
Anhydrous led the way lower, dropping 10% from last month’s price. It had an average price of $522/ton, $58/ton lower than last month.
The average UAN32 price was 9% lower than last month at $290/ton, a change of $30/ton. In addition, UAN28 prices decreased 6% from the prior month with an average price of $255/ton, down $17/ton.
MAP decreased 8% compared to last month and was at $488/ton, a $43/ton decline.
Urea prices were down 5% from last month at $408/ton, a $20/ton drop.
The remaining two fertilizers were lower in price, but not significantly. DAP had an average price of $491/ton, down $4/ton, while potash carried a price tag of $387/ton, $8/ton less than last month.
On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.44/lb.N, anhydrous $0.32/lb.N, UAN28 $0.46/lb.N and UAN32 $0.45/lb.N.
A variety of factors are contributing to lower retail fertilizer prices over the last month, fertilizer retailers told DTN. Steve Lias, general manager of the Farmers Elevator Co. in Humboldt, South Dakota, said each type of fertilizer has a different reason for declining prices.
With the wet spring across much of the Midwest, many farmers skipped phosphate (P) application. Lias said in his home region of southeastern South Dakota only about 20% to 25% of the corn acres and 40% of the soybeans acres even got planted.
As a result, many retailers still have a decent supply of the fertilizer. Even if P was applied and no crop was planted, the fertilizer should still be available to the crop next spring as long as something like a cover crop was not harvested for forage, he said.
“There are a lot of tons of P still around, and the demand for it is not there, which has affected the price,” Lias said.
Potash (K) prices appear to be in the same boat with P fertilizer with lack of application in many areas, he said, but prices haven’t seen the same type of drop.
As for nitrogen (N), retail prices have been volatile in recent weeks with some prices lower and some prices higher. Lias, like many retailers and farmers are in a wait-and-see mode about where N prices could go in the near term.
Which direction N prices move could ultimately depend on events in the world market. The number of tons moved to countries such as China and India will have an effect on North American N prices, he said.
“There could be some tightening with N supply in some regions here in the Midwest,” he said.
With prices significantly lower in recent weeks, one fertilizer’s price did drop to being lower in price from a year ago. MAP is now 5% less expensive than last year at this time.
Seven of the eight major fertilizers continue to be higher compared to last year. DAP is 1% higher, 10-34-0 is 6% more expensive, UAN32 is 7% higher, potash is 8% more expensive, anhydrous is 9% higher, UAN28 10% more expensive and urea is 12% more expensive compared to last year.
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.
|Sep 3-7 2018||488||514||358||366|
|Oct 1-5 2018||501||523||364||389|
|Oct 29-Nov 2 2018||506||528||366||408|
|Nov 26-30 2018||501||530||369||409|
|Dec 24-28 2018||507||533||379||407|
|Jan 21-25 2019||512||535||383||409|
|Feb 18-22 2019||512||536||385||404|
|Mar 18-22 2019||509||533||386||401|
|Apr 15-19 2019||504||531||388||404|
|May 13-17 2019||498||526||392||426|
|Jun 10-14 2019||497||527||392||434|
|Jul 8-12, 2019||497||532||392||431|
|Aug 5-9 2019||495||531||395||428|
|Sep 2-6 2019||491||488||387||408|
|Sep 3-7 2018||446||480||232||271|
|Oct 1-5 2018||451||488||237||279|
|Oct 29-Nov 2 2018||457||505||245||285|
|Nov 26-30 2018||457||519||246||287|
|Dec 24-28 2018||457||568||266||303|
|Jan 21-25 2019||467||584||270||313|
|Feb 18-22 2019||470||596||271||317|
|Mar 18-22 2019||470||597||270||318|
|Apr 15-19 2019||481||594||270||317|
|May 13-17 2019||487||595||267||311|
|Jun 10-14 2019||487||591||271||314|
|Jul 8-12, 2019||485||585||276||317|
|Aug 5-9 2019||491||580||272||320|
|Sep 2-6 2019||473||522||255||290|
Source: Russ Quin, DTN
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