Mosaic to permanently discontinue production of MOP at Carlsbad facility Mosaic said in a filing that on July 21 it decided to permanently discontinue production of muriate of potash at its Carlsbad, New Mexico facility. The final date for production is expected to be December 31. The decision is based on the quality of the ore in the Carlsbad basin and the age of the facility's infrastructure. These combined factors make it difficult for the operations to remain competitive in an already challenging global market. The discontinuation of this product at Carlsbad is a further step in our previously announced ongoing asset optimization initiatives. Its larger potash production facilities at Esterhazy, Belle Plaine and Colonsay in Saskatchewan, Canada will continue to produce MOP.Mosaicís plan for the immediate future is to transition the Carlsbad facility to the exclusive production of its highly valued K-Mag product line. K-Mag is a premium potash product that currently represents approximately 70% of production at the Carlsbad facility and is a long-term strategic asset for us.We currently estimate that the discontinued production will result in total pre-tax charges in the range of $135M-$160M. The third quarter pre-tax charges are estimated to be in the range of $55M-$77M with the majority of the remainder expected to be recorded in the fourth quarter.
Potash downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at JPMorgan JPMorgan downgraded Potash (POT) to Neutral citing valuation with shares near the firm's unchanged price target of $38. JPMorgan prefers Mosaic (MOS) at current valuation levels. The firm believes falling crop prices in anticipation of high domestic corn and soybean supplies could weigh on Potash shares.