Wool forward trading increases as auction market stabilises

Michael Avery, Southern Aurora Markets partner, March 27, 2020

WOOL’S forward trading market has recorded its highest weekly volume for the year, with growers opting for some certainty in these uncertain times.

Buyers were predominantly large offshore processors and a 96 tonnes were executed.

There was some light shining on the spot market with most qualities showing modest gains in the spot auction this week.

The majority of forward trades went through in the spring. The 19 micron contract traded off its earlier highs above 1600 cents, to finish the week trading at 1500 cents in September through to December as sellers outnumbered the buyers. This is around a 10 percent discount to cash, but still in the 65th percentile of prices for the last decade.

The nearby window traded lightly under the shadow of the ever-changing COVID-19 restrictions. April and May traded around cash with 19 micron trading at 1640-1650 cents and 21 micron to a high of 1635 cents.

Auctions appear to continuing on schedule, at least in the short term, due to the diligent proactive and cooperative work across the supply chain.

There appears to be real interest from processors to get some cover in the new season at reasonable levels. Given the uncertainty it would be prudent for growers to initiate some hedging for spring – even if it is considered disaster insurance.

Anticipated trading levels

19 micron                           21 micron

April/May/June                                              1600 cents                         1570 cents

July/Aug/September                                      1560 cents                         1500 cents

Oct/Nov/Dec                                                   1500 cents                         1450 cents

Jan/Feb/March                                               1480 cents                         1420 cents

Trade summary

April 19 micron                                  1640 cents                         5 tonnes

April 21 micron                                 1635 cents                         2.5 tonnes

May 19 micron                                1650 cents                         5 tonnes

September 19 micron                     1500/1640 cents              45.5 tonnes

October 19 micron                          1550/1551 cents              20 tonnes

November 19 micron                      1550/1570 cents              13 tonnes

December 19 micron                      1500 cents                          5 tonnes

Total 96 tonnes


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