CF Industries : Swings to First Annual Loss in More Than a Decade Amid Nitrogen Glut
By Maria Armental
A global oversupply of nitrogen fertilizer drove CF Industries Holdings Inc. (CF) to its first annual loss since 2005.
Nitrogen prices, company officials said, picked up in the fourth quarter and are expected to continue improving into the second quarter, largely driven by lower Chinese exports. But domestic prices remained below international prices.
Shares, up 15% over the past 12 months, fell 4%, to $33 in after-hours trading as results missed expectations.
Over all, CF swung to a $320 million fourth-quarter loss, or $1.38 a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $27 million, or 11 cents a share. Excluding a $134 million impairment charge and other items, the loss was 39 cents a share, compared with a profit of 72 cents a share a year earlier.
Revenue fell 22%, to $867 million.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had expected an adjusted loss of 5 cents a share on $908.6 million in revenue.
Gross profit margin narrowed to 10.8% from 25.1% a year earlier.
For the year, CF swung to a $277 million loss while revenue fell 14%, to $3.69 billion.
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