SOLID increases in finer Merino fleece and skirting types helped drive the Australian wool benchmark indicator higher this week.
The Australian Wool Exchange said the increased national offering — up 2517 bales to 46,256 bales — attracted strong widespread competition and only 10.5 percent failed to sell.
“The strongest buyer attention was focused on good style Merino fleece wools 18 micron and finer.
“This pushed prices higher on these types which was reflected in the individual Micron Price Guides (MPGs) across the country which gained between 10 and 71 cents,’ AWEX said.
“The movements in the other microns were very mixed, with varied results across microns and regions.
Sydney recorded increases on all Merino MPGs — mainly enjoying the gains felt in Melbourne on the final day of the previous series, AWEX said.
“In Melbourne and Fremantle, waning support of wool 19 micron and coarser as the series progressed ended with the MPGs for 19 to 21 micron in the south and west dropping by between 5 and 19 cents.
“The skirtings followed a very similar path to the fleece, and wools 18.5 micron and finer recorded general increases of between 20 and 30 cents, whilst the broader types barely maintained their previous levels or were slightly cheaper.”
AWEX said the crossbred sector was the poorest performer for the series, and general losses of between 5 and 30 cents helped to push the MPGs for 26 to 32 micron down by between 5 and 28 cents.
“With mixed results within the Merino Fleece MPGs combined with varied movements in the other sectors, the AWEX Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) recorded a 3-cent increase, closing at 1392 cents/kg clean.
Australian Wool Innovation said the auction purchasing and market direction was once again set by the major locally based exporters.
“In fact, Australia’s largest exporter bought an impressive 26 percent of the Merino fleece and skirtings that were sold.
“Stronger Chinese top making interest and indent orders were seen on the Merino fleece to provide the stiffest of the competition and skirtings were fought over by mainly the traders and top makers,” AWI said.
“The buying of the crossbred wool types was dominated by a Chinese indent who outbid the traders as the European purchasing interest of last week waned for the time being.
“Carding wools remain the domain of locally-based processors and traders.”
Next week there will be sales on Tuesday and Thursday to accommodate the Australia Day public holiday on Wednesday and 46,490 bales are currently expected to be offered.
Sources: AWEX, AWI.