AUCTIONSPLUS online wool sales slowed last week, but early online purchases this week might indicate a change in buyer sentiment.
Prices at physical auctions dipped for most Merino wools and especially off-style and inferior types last week, with only crossbred wool recording gains.
AuctionsPlus regional sales associate Ed Murphy said reports from the physical auctions last week suggested that buying at the southern and western selling centres reflected the quality of the wool offered, with drops 20-40c/kg in all AWEX Merino micron price guides.
These losses, combined with a similar but lesser trend at the northern centre, of 15-20c/kg, led to an 11 cent drop in Eastern Market Indicator to 1952c/kg clean.
Mr Murphy said the largest auction gains last week were made by the 26-28 micron crossbred wools.
“This sentiment at the physical auctions was reflected online as AuctionsPlus Wool sold only 38 bales,” he said.
Despite the lift in crossbred fleece prices at the physical auctions, demand online was relatively quiet, with only four bales of crossbred wool selling on AuctionsPlus. The top crossbred fleece price online was 1210c/kg greasy, or 1714c/kg clean, for a four-bale line of non-mulesed 24 micron AAAFX. The line yielded 70.6pc with 1pc vegetable matter (vm) content.
The top price paid online last week was 1383c/kg greasy, or 2195c/kg clean, for a 10-bale line of 20.4 micron AAAM. The line yielded 63pc, with an average staple length of 71 mm, a tensile strength of 50N/kt and 2.2pc vm.
Merino lambs wool sold to 1294c/kg greasy, or 1914c/kg clean, for a three-bale line of 18.2 micron AAAMLMS with a yield of 67.6pc and 0.1pc vm. Another seven-bale line of 17.7 micron AAAMLMS with a yield of 65.4pc and 0.2pc vm sold for 1244c/kg greasy, or 1902c/kg clean.
Mr Murphy said supply remains steady on the auction market with 33,300 bales on offer.
“Looking forward, at some point the Chinese mills will have to re-enter the market with mounting supply pressures, but there are no reports of this happening at this stage.
“It is still expected the market will continue along the same path as last week, although with 51 bales sold this week as of Tuesday morning online, early buying activity online may suggest a change in sentiment at physical auction this week.”