Compass De-icing Volumes Impacted by Mild Weather

Compass Minerals International Inc of Overland Park, KS has reported a 31% decline in fourth quarter net earnings to US$30.1 million on sales 13% lower at US$267.1 million. The decrease in sales is attributed to the effects of mild winter weather in North America on demand for deicing salt. Compass’ Salt segment had fourth quarter operating earnings of US$47.9 million on sales of US$206.7 million, down from US$53.4 million on sales of US$250.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2011. Highway deicing volume declined 17%, to 2.3 million tons. The average sales price for highway deicing salt declined marginally to US$52.56/ton. The segment’s consumer and industrial sales volume declined 13% to 585,000 tons and the average price fell 4% to US$150.95/ton. For all of 2012, Compass’ Salt segment generated operating earnings of US$126.0 million on sales of US$703.4 million compared with US$184.7 million on sales of US$885.3 million in 2011. Highway deicing sales volume decreased 26% to 7.5 million tons and consumer and industrial sales volume declined 8% to 2.1 million tons. The average sales price for highway deicing products was US$53.1/ton, up from US$52.3/ton. For consumer and industrial products the average price declined from US$153.12/ton to US$144.87/ton. Compass’ Specialty Fertilizer segment had fourth quarter sales of US$56.6 million compared with US$53.6 million in the prior year period. Sales volumes increased 6%, to 95,000 tons, while the average selling price decreased 1% to US$626/ton. For the full year, Specialty Fertilizers generated operating earnings of US$58.4 million on sales of US$226.2 million versus US$77.0 million on sales of US$209.6 million in 2011. The sales increase reflected a 7% increase in sales volume, to 367,000 tons, and a 1% increase in average price to US$616/ton.

Volume 27 issue 4

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