Potash profit plunges, but sees demand rebound

|About: Potash Corporation of Saska... (POT)|By:, SA News Editor

Potash Corp. (POT) +1.8% premarket after Q1 earnings and revenue beat analyst expectations and the company raises its sales outlook for the year.

Q1's realized potash price was $250/metric ton, far below $363 from the same period last year, but low prices are helping to boost purchases, as sales volume rose to 2.3M metric tons vs. 2.2M a year ago.

POT now expects to sell 8.3M-8.7M metric tons of potash this year, up slightly from earlier guidance of 8.2M-8.6M and far better than 2013 (8.1M) or 2012 (7.2M).

Issues downside Q2 guidance, seeing EPS of $0.40-$0.45 vs. analyst consensus estimate $0.49; raises bottom end of FY 2014 EPS outlook to $1.50-$1.80 vs. prior guidance of $1.40-$1.80 and $1.67 consensus.

Sees "steady improvements" taking hold in the potash industry, and maintains its FY 2014 global potash shipments outlook of 55M-57M metric tons vs. 53.5m tons shipped in 2013.

Reports weaker Q1 results from its nitrogen and phosphate units due to lower prices; phosphate production also was disrupted by bad weather.