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K+S presents Q3/09 figures: Weak Fertilizer Demand Weighs on Earnings

K+S presents Q3/09 figures: Weak Fertilizer Demand Weighs on Earnings

@@start.t1@@--------------------------------------------------------------------------------   Corporate news transmitted by euro adhoc. The issuer/originator is solely   responsible for the content of this announcement. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------@@end@@

Financial Figures/Balance Sheet/quarterly report/9-month report

Subtitle: K+S presents Q3/09 figures: Weak Fertilizer Demand Weighs on Earnings

Kassel (euro adhoc) - Kassel, 12 November 2009

K+S presents Q3/09 figures: Weak Fertilizer Demand Weighs on Earnings

@@start.t2@@• At EUR 698 million, Q3 revenues are down 52% year on year
      • Q3 operating earnings reach EUR 9.4 million
      • Extraordinary effects result in Q3 adjusted earnings per share of
         EUR (0.01)
      • Salt business segment´s operating earnings rise by almost 60%
      • 2009 outlook unchanged; higher fertilizer sales volume expected for 2010

The third quarter too was characterised by continued  below-average  demand  for@@end@@

fertilizers. With prices for agricultural products failing to recover until  the end of September and with agreements on potash deliveries to  China  yet  to  be concluded, agriculture  continued  to  display restraint  for  fertilizers.  In addition, the trade sector has been seeking to keep inventories, which have  now been largely depleted, as low as possible and to  delay  the  early  stocking-up which is otherwise customary at this time. During the  first  nine  months,   the K+S response to continued weak demand has been to reduce  output and  introduce short-time working in the Potash and Magnesium Products business segment.

"From today´s perspective,  as  already  announced  in  August,  the fertilizer business can still not be expected to normalise in the   fourth  quarter  of  the year. From many factors, such as, for example, the low use of fertilizers  since the autumn of 2008, low   inventories  in  the  trade  sector  and  the  possible conclusion of an agreement with  China,  however,  one  could  expect  that  the global demand for potash should see a significant recovery next year and  thus, our potash sales will rise again," says Norbert Steiner, Chairman of  the  Board of Executive Directors. "In addition, the first-time inclusion  of  Morton  Salt for the entire year 2010 will impact positively on both our  Group  revenues  as well as on earnings per share," Steiner continued.

Revenues also down significantly year on year in Q3 K+S Group revenues for the third quarter fell by  about  52%  year  on  year   to EUR 698.1 million, primarily as a result of price  and  volume   factors.  This is mainly due  to  significant  revenue  decreases  in the  Potash  and  Magnesium Products and Nitrogen Fertilizers business segments.

Q3 operating earnings reach EUR 9.4 million EBIT I for the third quarter amounted  to  EUR  9.4  million,  compared  with the record quarterly result of EUR 502.2 million a year ago. Earnings fell sharply in the Fertilizer business  sector  above  all  as  a  result of  lower  revenues. Moreover, in the case of nitrogen fertilizers, higher  raw  material  costs  for the production of complex fertilizers as well as inventory write-downs  on  such fertilizers weighed on earnings in particular. By contrast, satisfactory  early- procurement in the European de-icing salt business  coupled  with   lower  energy and freight costs resulted in an increase in operating earnings  for  the  Salt business segment.

At EUR (11.7) million, the third quarter financial result was down   slightly year on year (Q3/08: EUR (8.1) million)  as  a  result  of   higher  interest expenses, including one-off expenses in connection with the financing of  the  acquisition of Morton Salt.

The extraordinary effects described above also caused adjusted   earnings  before taxes for the third quarter to  amount  to  EUR   (2.3)  million  (Q3/08:  EUR 494.1 million) and adjusted earnings after taxes to amount to EUR (2.1) million (Q3/08: EUR 358.1 million). Correspondingly, adjusted earnings per  share  also decreased against previous year´s period to EUR (0.01) (Q3/08: EUR 2.17 per share).

Outlook for financial year 2009 unchanged K+S continues to estimate that the total sales volume of  potash  and  magnesium products for the year as a whole will amount to about  4  million  tonnes,  with about 3 million tonnes having been sold in the first nine months.

As already stated in the Half-yearly  Financial  Report,  revenues   of  the  K+S Group in financial year 2009 should  decline   significantly  compared  with  the previous year. In the Fertilizer business sector,  significantly  lower  volumes as well as tangibly lower  average  prices  will  have  a  negative  impact.  By contrast, the Salt business sector should report a  significantly   higher  level of revenues as a result of the  above-average  de-icing salt  business  in  the first quarter 2009 as well as the first-time inclusion of  Morton  Salt  from  1 October 2009. However, the increase  will  not  be  able  to  make  up  for  the negative development of revenues in the fertilizer area.

There is also an unchanged assessment,  that  K+S  Group´  costs  in 2009  will decline appreciably against last year. K+S expects that short-term working  will more than offset  the  additional  costs   arising  from  the  latest  collective agreement pay rise.  The   costs  of  energy,  materials  and  freight  are  also expected to cause relief. However, as a result of  the  customarily  high  fixed cost component in the mining industry,  the  total  decline  in   costs  will  be significantly below the decrease in revenues described above.

K+S still assumes that  EBIT  I  for  financial  year  2009  will   fall  sharply compared with previous year´s record result. This is   linked  primarily  to  the declining level of earnings in the   fertilizer  business.  Even  a  stronger  US dollar exchange rate on average and higher  earnings  from  salt  compared  with last year will only be able to cushion this trend to a limited degree.

The financial result will be significantly weaker  compared  with   the  previous year due to higher net indebtedness and the extraordinary effects  arising  from the hedging of the Morton Salt purchase price.

Thus, adjusted Group earnings after taxes  for  2009  as  a  whole   should  fall sharply.

Outlook 2010: Higher sales volume expected for potash products K+S Group revenues in 2010  will  be  positively  influenced  to  a   significant degree  by  the  first-time  inclusion  of  Morton  Salt for  the  whole  year. Fertilizer demand should increase again to about 45 million tonnes (2009:  about 30 million tonnes expected) as a result of lower  trade  sector  inventories  of straight fertilizers in the meantime, lower soil potash  content  following   two very good harvests and the lower application of fertilizers   since  autumn  2008 as well as the assumption that an agreement will be  concluded  with  China.  In the Fertilizer business  sector,  K+S therefore  expects  significantly  higher sales volume, especially for potash fertilizers. However, it is  very  difficult to forecast future potash prices at this moment in time. Should the price  level currently attainable on world markets is to continue,    a   significant  rise  in revenues for the fertilizers  business  and   thus  for  the  Group  too  can  be expected in the coming year. Such a scenario would also result  in  an  increase in operating earnings. By contrast, a decline in the  global  market  price  for potash fertilizers would,  however,  have  a  considerable  negative  impact on revenues and profitability of the K+S Group.

Experience growth The K+S  Group  is  one  of  the  world's  leading suppliers  of  standard  and speciality fertilizers.  In  the  salt   business,  measured  against  production capacity,  K+S, with locations in Europe and in North and South America, is  the world´s leading  producer.  K+S  offers  a  comprehensive  range  of  goods   and services for agriculture, industry and private consumers which   provides  growth opportunities in virtually every sphere of daily life.  The  K+S  Group  employs more than 15,000 people worldwide and achieved revenues of about EUR  5  billion in 2008. The K+S share - the only commodities stock on the German DAX®  index  - is listed on all German stock exchanges (ISIN: DE0007162000, symbol: SDF).  More information about K+S is available at www.k-plus-s.com.

Note to editors: The press release and the Quarterly  Financial   Report  can  be downloaded from our website www.k-plus-s.com.

Conference Call with Analysts In connection with the publication of the  figures  for  the  third  quarter  of 2009, on 12 November 2009, Norbert Steiner, CEO, Jan Peter Nonnenkamp,  CFO,  as well as Joachim Felker, member of  the  Board  of  Executive  Directors  of  K+S Aktiengesellschaft, will answer analysts` questions  during  a   conference  call held in English. From 15:00, you can also follow the conference  call  live  on the Internet at www.k-plus-s.com or by telephone by dialling  +49.40.37707.9033.

Your contact persons: Press: Michael Wudonig phone: +49 561 9301-1262 fax: +49 561 9301-1666 michael.wudonig@k-plus-s.com

Investor Relations: Christian Herrmann phone: +49 561 9301-1460 fax: +49 561 9301-2425 christian.herrmann@k-plus-s.com

This press release contains facts  and  forecasts  that  relate  to   the  future development of the K+S Group and its  companies.  The   forecasts  are  estimates that we have made on the basis of all the information available to  us  at  this moment in time. Should the assumptions underlying these forecasts prove  not  to be correct or should certain risks - such as  those  referred  to  in  the  Risk Report - materialise, actual developments and events may  deviate   from  current expectations. The  Company  assumes  no  obligation  to update  the  statements contained in this press release, save for the making of such disclosures as  are required by the provisions of statute.

@@start.t3@@|K+S Group at a Glance                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|3rd Quarter 2009                         | |                 | |                  | |            |
| |                                                 | |Q3              | |Q3                | |            |
|All figures in accordance with  | |July -        | |July -         | |            |
|IFRSs                                          | |Sept.         | |Sept.          | |            |
| |                                                 | |2009          | |2008            | |Change  |
| |                                                 | |EUR million  | |EUR million    | |in %      |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Revenues                                      | |698.1         | |1,441.4        | |(51.6)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
| |Potash and Magnesium Products  | |340.8         | |763.4          | |(55.4)  |
| |Nitrogen Fertilizers                 | |204.5         | |515.6          | |(60.3)  |
| |Salt                                          | |121.7         | |131.0          | |(7.1)    |
| |Complementary Business Segments| |30.9          | |31.2            | |(1.0)    |
| |Reconciliation                          | |0.2            | |0.2              | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Operating earnings (EBIT I)        | |9.4            | |502.2          | |(98.1)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
| |Potash and Magnesium Products  | |54.0          | |465.6          | |(88.4)  |
| |Nitrogen Fertilizers                 | |(47.3)        | |40.0            | |-          |
| |Salt                                          | |13.5          | |8.5              | |+58.8    |
| |Complementary Business Segments| |4.3            | |5.1              | |(15.7)  |
| |Reconciliation                          | |(15.1)        | |(17.0)         | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Results after operating hedges (EBIT  |17.4    | |468.1          | |(96.3)  |
|II)                                                        |          | |                  | |            |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Financial result                        | |                  | |                 | |            |
|                                                 | |(11.7)         | |(8.1)         | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Earnings before income taxes        | |5.7            | |460.0          | |(98.8)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Earnings before income taxes,          | |(2.3)  | |494.1          | |-          |
|adjusted1)                                         | |          | |                  | |            |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Group earnings after taxes          | |3.7            | |333.5          | |(98.9)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Group earnings after taxes, adjusted1)| |(2.1)| |358.1          | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                  | |            |
|Earnings per share, adjusted (EUR)1)|(0.01)        | |2.17            | |-          |
| |                                                    | |              | |                  | |            |
|Capital expenditure2)                    | |43.5        | |48.4            | |(10.1)  |
|                                                      | |              | |                  | |            |
|                                                                                                                |
|                                                                                                                |
|1) The adjusted figures only contain the result from operative            |
|forecast hedges already realised during the current period. By            |
|contrast, changes in the market value of operative forcast hedges        |
|still outstanding are not taken into account. The effects on deferred |
|and cash taxes are also eliminated; Q3/09 tax rate: 27.9% (Q3/08:        |
|27.8%).                                                                                                    |
|                                                                                                                |
|2) For or in connection with intangible assets as well as property,    |
|plant and equipment.                                                                                |
|                                                                                                                |
|K+S Group at a Glance              |    |                 | |                 | |            |
|January - September 2009            | |                 | |                 | |            |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|All figures in accordance with    | |Jan. -        | |Jan. -        | |            |
|IFRSs                                            | |Sept.         | |Sept.         | |            |
| |                                                 | |2009          | |2008          | |Change  |
| |                                                 | |EUR million  | |EUR million  | |in %      |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Revenues                                        | |2,512.5      | |3,838.9      | |(34.6)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
| |Potash and Magnesium Products  | |1,061.1      | |1,898.7      | |(44.1)  |
| |Nitrogen Fertilizers                 | |804.0         | |1,437.8      | |(44.1)  |
| |Salt                                          | |559.3         | |409.3         | |+36.6    |
| |Complementary Business Segments| |87.6          | |92.5          | |(5.3)    |
| |Reconciliation                          | |0.5            | |0.6            | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Operating earnings (EBIT I)         | |201.5         | |1,054.9      | |(80.9)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
| |Potash and Magnesium Products  | |204.8         | |927.9         | |(77.9)  |
| |Nitrogen Fertilizers                 | |(65.8)        | |126.6         | |-          |
| |Salt                                          | |93.1          | |19.0          | |+390.0  |
| |Complementary Business Segments| |9.5            | |19.3          | |(50.8)  |
| |Reconciliation                          | |(40.1)        | |(37.9)        | |-          |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Result after operating hedges (EBIT    |208.0  | |906.3         | |(77.0)  |
|II)                                                        |          | |                 | |            |
|                                              |    | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Financial result                    |    | |(96.7)        | |(22.3)        | |-          |
|                                              |    | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Earnings before income taxes        | |111.3         | |884.0         | |(87.4)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Earnings before income taxes,          | |104.8  | |1,032.6      | |(89.9)  |
|adjusted1)                                         | |          | |                 | |            |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Group earnings after taxes          | |80.8          | |644.5         | |(87.5)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Group earnings after taxes, adjusted1)| |76.1 | |751.8         | |(89.9)  |
| |                                                 | |                 | |                 | |            |
|Earnings per share, adjusted (EUR)1)|0.46          | |4.56          | |(89.9)  |
| |                                                    | |              | |                 | |            |
|Capital expenditure2)                    | |114.1      | |133.1         | |(14.3)  |
|                                                      | |              | |                 | |            |
|Employees as of 30 Sept. (number) | |12,378    | |12,323        | |+0.4      |
|  of which trainees (number)         | |648         | |616            | |+5.2      |
|                                                                                                                |
|1) The adjusted figures only contain the result from operative            |
|forecast hedges already realised during the current period. By            |
|contrast, changes in the market value of operative forcast hedges        |
|still outstanding are not taken into account. The effects on deferred |
|and cash taxes are also eliminated; Q3/09 tax rate: 27.9% (Q3/08:        |
|27.8%).                                                                                                    |
|                                                                                                                |
|2) For or in connection with intangible assets as well as property,    |
|plant and equipment.                                                                                |@@end@@

@@start.t4@@end of announcement                                                 euro adhoc
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------@@end@@

ots Originaltext: K+S Aktiengesellschaft
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.presseportal.ch

Further inquiry note:
Your contact persons:
Press:
Michael Wudonig
phone: +49 561 9301-1262
fax: +49 561 9301-1666
michael.wudonig@k-plus-s.com

Investor Relations:
Christian Herrmann
phone: +49 561 9301-1460
fax: +49 561 9301-2425
christian.herrmann@k-plus-s.com

Branche: Chemicals
ISIN:      DE0007162000
WKN:        716200
Index:    DAX, Midcap Market Index, CDAX, Classic All Share, HDAX,
              Prime All Share
Börsen:  Frankfurt / regulated dealing/prime standard
              Berlin / regulated dealing
              Hamburg / regulated dealing
              Stuttgart / regulated dealing
              Düsseldorf / regulated dealing
              Hannover / regulated dealing
              München / regulated dealing



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