AUSTRALIAN Merino and crossbred wool prices increased strongly across all micron categories at auctions this week, with renewed Chinese interest.
The Australian Wool Exchange said with only the Melbourne and Sydney selling centres operating, the national offering reduced to 36,288 bales and brokers passed in only 4.1 percent.
“The smaller selection attracted strong buyer demand and from the outset it was apparent that price rises were on the cards.
“Prices opened strongly and then slowly, but noticeably increased as the series progressed,” AWEX said.
“The finer Merino fleece types again received the most attention and as a result recorded the largest increases.
“This was felt mainly in Melbourne, where the finer types opened at levels significantly below those in Sydney,” AWEX said.
The individual Merino Price Guides (MPGs) for 18 micron and finer rose by 84-115 cents in Melbourne. All other Merino fleece MPGs added between 18 and 75 cents for the series.
“These gains, combined with positive movements in all other areas, helped to push the AWEX Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) up by 50 cents, the largest weekly rise in the EMI since January.
“The EMI has now risen for four consecutive weeks and closed the series at 1393 cents/kg clean, AWEX said.
“The last time the EMI was at a higher point was back in March last year.”
AWEX said after suffering overall falls for the previous two months, all crossbred wools recorded rises this week on the back of solid demand.
“The MPGs added between 7 and 26 cents, and the 25 cent rise in the 32 micron MPG in the south was the largest increase in percentage terms for the series (+11.7pc).”
AWEX said all four sectors of the market — Merino fleece, skirtings, oddments and crossbred fleece — recorded rises in their respective indicators.
“This was the first time since January that the market managed this feat.
“The jump in prices combined with the Fremantle region returning (next week), has pushed the national offering up for the following week (to 45,341 bales).”
Prices at highest US dollar post-pandemic level – AWI
Australian Wool Innovation trade consultant Scott Carmody said the level where the EMI settled at the end of this week in US dollars terms is the first time since the pandemic cast its dampener on the wool market that pre-COVID-19 levels have been matched.
“The US$EMI is at its highest point since mid-January 2020 when the market was US1082c/kg clean.
“In reality though, the US$ values are as strong as any point in time over the past two years, with just five weeks since July 2019 having a higher closing US$ value.”
Mr Carmody said the more widespread interest that has become apparent from buyers outside China over the past few weeks were still active this week, but it was the Chinese indents that came to the fore alongside the local exporters trading to China.
“Apart from the crossbred sector, which was dominated by the largest European top maker, Chinese purchasing determined the price movements, and it was all to the positive.”
Sources – AWEX, AWI.