CHS up against 'challenging market conditions' in Q1

Energy segment performs well, while Ag segment adversely affected by lower margins.

CHS Inc., the nation's leading farmer-owned cooperative, reported results for the first quarter of its 2018 fiscal year ended Nov. 30, 2017, with net income coming in at $180.1 million, compared to net income of $209.2 million for the same period a year ago.

Consolidated revenues for the first quarter of fiscal 2018 were $8.0 billion, the same as a year ago. Pretax income was $199.6 million for the 2018 first quarter versus $225.6 million for the 2017 first quarter.

"Despite challenging market conditions, CHS experienced a solid first quarter thanks to our continued focus on three key priorities: strengthening relationships, sharpening operational excellence and restoring financial flexibility," CHS president and chief executive officer Jay Debertin said. "In the first quarter, we recorded solid earnings from our businesses and reduced long-term debt. These actions are helping to strengthen and grow CHS."

CHS reported first-quarter results by segment:

Energy

The Energy segment generated pretax income of $113.1 million during the first quarter, compared to $70.0 million during the same period last year. The $43.1 million increase was primarily driven by improved margins within refined fuels.

Ag

The Ag segment -- which includes domestic and global grain marketing and crop nutrients businesses, renewable fuels, local retail operations and processing and food ingredients -- generated pretax income of $74.5 million for the first quarter, compared to $109.2 million for the same period the previous fiscal year.

The $34.7 million decrease was primarily the result of lower margins in grain marketing, processing and food ingredients and renewable fuels. Lower volumes in grain marketing and processing and food ingredients also contributed to the decrease. The decrease was partially offset by an increase in earnings in the crop nutrients and country operations businesses.

Nitrogen Production

The Nitrogen Production segment is comprised of the company's investment in CF Industries Nitrogen LLC and generated pretax income of $5.7 million during the first quarter, compared to $27.0 million during the same time in fiscal 2017.

The decrease in earnings was primarily due to a gain of $29.1 million from an embedded derivative associated with CF Nitrogen that was recognized in fiscal 2017. There was no comparable gain in the current fiscal year.

This decrease was partially offset by higher urea and urea ammonium nitrate prices.

Food

The Food segment is comprised of CHS's investment in Ventura Foods LLC and generated pretax income of $1.0 million in the first quarter, compared to $10.6 million during the same period of fiscal 2017. The decrease in earnings was due to lower margins at Ventura Foods.

Corporate & Other

This category is comprised primarily of the wheat milling joint venture and the financing, hedging and insurance operations. The segment generated pretax income of $5.3 million in the first quarter, compared to $8.7 for the same period of fiscal 2017.

The decrease was due to lower earnings from the wheat milling joint venture and less interest revenue due to amending a receivables securitization agreement in late fiscal 2017, pursuant to which CHS no longer receives interest income from those receivables.

CHS is a global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the U.S. that is diversified in energy, grains and foods. CHS supplies energy, crop nutrients, grain marketing services, animal feed, food and food ingredients, along with insurance, financial and risk management services.

CHS Inc. earnings, millions $

 

  -Fiscal first quarter-

 Segment

2018

2017

Energy

113.1

70.0

Ag

74.5

109.2

Nitrogen Production

5.7

27.0

Foods

1.0

10.6

Corporate & Other

5.3

8.8

  Income before income taxes

199.6

225.6

  Income taxes

(19.9)

(16.6)

  Net income

179.7

209.0

  Net income attributable to non-controlling interests

0.4

0.2

  Net income attributable to CHS Inc.

180.1

209.2

 

TAGS: Business
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