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UPDATE 1-CF Industries reports smaller-than-expected Q4 loss

From Reuters - February 14, 2018

(Reuters) - CF Industries Holdings Inc (CF.N) reported a smaller-than-expected loss in the fourth quarter on Wednesday as the largest nitrogen fertilizer maker in North America sold more fertilizer at higher prices.

The companys sales volume for ammonia jumped 58.4 percent in the quarter to 1.2 million tons and the average selling price rose 2.9 percent to $285 per ton.

Prices of nitrogen fertilizer rose as China shut down its low-cost coal-based fertilizer producers, which had kept prices low for years.

The company said nitrogen prices continue to rise in 2018, with Brazil and India driving the demand for urea but warned that margins could shrink due to higher oil and freight costs.

The company reported net profit of $465 million, or $1.98 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with a loss of $320 million, or $1.38 per share, a year earlier.

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