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FULL YEAR: AGRIUM'S SALES DOWN 7%, NET EARNINGS DROP 72%
Source: Agrium news release

To view the complete report, click here.

Agrium Inc. (TSX and NYSE: AGU) announced today consolidated net earnings ("net earnings") from continuing operations of $110-million ($0.74 diluted earnings per share) for the fourth quarter of 2013, compared with net earnings from continuing operations of $358-million in the fourth quarter of 2012 ($2.37 diluted earnings per share).

Net earnings were $99-million ($0.66 diluted earnings per share) for the fourth quarter of 2013, compared to net earnings of $354-million ($2.34 diluted earnings per share) in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Our net earnings from continuing operations, excluding the fourth quarter guidance exclusions mentioned below, were $126-million ($0.87 diluted earnings per share). This excludes a purchase gain of $257-million related to the acquisition of the Viterra Inc.

Agri-product assets ("Viterra acquisition") ($1.35 diluted earnings per share) and a fourth quarter pre-tax loss for the acquired Viterra operations of $27-million ($0.14 diluted earnings per share, includes $8-million of integration costs).

The Viterra acquisition results were excluded from the original fourth quarter guidance provided in November 2013. Also excluded were $6-million of Corporate legal and other costs ($0.03 diluted earnings per share) incurred in the period related to the Viterra acquisition and a goodwill impairment of $220-million ($1.16 in diluted earnings per share) for the Landmark acquisition due to synergy delays and reduced expectations for sales, gross margins and long-term growth. Share-based payment expenses in the fourth quarter were $28-million ($0.15 diluted earnings per share).

Discontinued operations reported a net loss of $11-million ($0.08 diluted loss per share) for the fourth quarter and included a $75-million ($0.52 diluted earnings per share) insurance recovery for the resolution of a long-standing litigation case pertaining to soybean shipments and a $60-million post-tax write-down ($0.42 diluted earnings per share), primarily of goodwill, as a result of the previously announced strategic review of the Agrium Advanced Technologies business unit ("AAT").1

On an annual basis, 2013 net earnings from continuing operations were $1.08-billion ($7.31 diluted earnings per share), down from net earnings from continuing operations of $1.52-billion ($9.67 diluted earnings per share) in 2012. 2013 net earnings were $1.06-billion ($7.20 diluted earnings per share), compared to $1.50-billion ($9.55 diluted earnings per share) in 2012.

"Agrium's Retail results were excellent this quarter, particularly considering the decline in nutrient prices that occurred and the compressed fall application season in the U.S.," commented Chuck Magro, Agrium's President & CEO. "Retail achieved record fourth quarter results due to increased margins across almost all shelves.

Our Wholesale business unit, which has more direct exposure to volatility in nutrient markets, saw their results impacted by lower global prices across all nutrients. Global nitrogen and phosphate markets have firmed significantly in early 2014 in response to what we expect will be a strong spring season," continued Mr. Magro.

"In a quarter where price instability and a compressed application window were a challenge, we delivered record results for Retail, which helped generate $1.2-billion in cash flow from operations for the quarter.

This is one illustration of the benefits of our integrated strategy and why we remain confident in our ability to generate strong results over the coming years and deliver on our long-term targets," added Mr. Magro.


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