Mosaic posts higher second-quarter profits

By Ruhi Soni

(Reuters) -Mosaic Co posted higher second-quarter profit on Monday as a global fertilizer shortage drove up prices of crop nutrients.

Companies such as Mosaic are benefiting from sanctions on Russia and Belarus, the world’s No.2 and 3 fertilizer suppliers. Russia produces 13% of the world’s fertilizers that contain potash, phosphate and nitrogen.

The sanctions have worsened global supply shortfalls of crucial crop nutrients and sent their prices soaring. During the April-June quarter, prices of these nutrients approached levels not seen since the 2008 food crisis, when the prices had hit an all-time high.

Mosaic, the world’s largest producer of finished phosphate products, said net sales in its phosphates segment grew to $1.8 billion from last year’s $1.2 billion.

Net earnings attributable to the world’s fourth-biggest fertilizer producer more than doubled to $1.04 billion, or $2.85 a share, in the quarter ended June 30, from $437.2 million, or $1.14 per share, a year ago.

CF Industries Holdings Inc, which overtook Mosaic in market capitalization during the quarter to become the world’s third-biggest fertilizer maker, posted record quarterly profits.

Net income attributable to CF was $1.17 billion, or $5.58 a share, in the quarter ended June 30, from last year’s $246 million, or $1.14 per share.

(Reporting by Ruhi Soni in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)