Wool Market Reports

Wool prices lift as the bale offering drops to season low

Sheep Central, June 7, 2024

WOOL prices lifted in all categories at Australian auctions this week as the national offering dropped to its lowest level since September 2020.

The Australian Wool Exchange said the market recorded an overall increase, for the second consecutive selling series.

Fremantle had a non-sale week in this series, and the national offering dropped sharply as a result, AWEX said.

There were originally 28,010 bales on offer, but after 4 percent was withdrawn prior to sale, there was just 26,897 bales remaining available to the trade. A further five percent was passed-in during the week.

“This was easily the smallest sale of the 2023/24 selling season and the smallest sale since September 2020,” AWEX said.

“This small offering attracted strong buyer interest from the outset.

“Once again, the strongest demand was in higher yielding wool, particularly lots possessing favourable additional measurement results, but due to the limited selection, all wool regardless of specifications generally sold at levels higher than in the previous series.”

AWEX said by the end of the week, in the Merino fleece the individual Micron Price Guides (MPGs) had risen by between 1 and 37 cents.

“The crossbred sector also had a solid week with all MPGs closing at higher levels.

“For the second week in a row the 26 micron MPG in the south was the strongest performer, adding a further 26 cents to the 22 cents added last week, meaning a 48-cent two-week increase, a rise of 9.3pc,” AWEX said.

The skirtings tracked a similar path to the fleece and the oddments also closed higher.

The AWEX Eastern Market Indicator added 15 cents for the series, closing at 1152c/kg clean.

“The EMI has now risen for four consecutive selling days and has not posted a negative result in five.

“The EMI has added 22 cents across this run, an improvement of 1.9pc,” AWEX said.

Market strong from opening lot – AWI

Australian Wool Innovation trade consultant Scott Carmody said positivity reigned at this week’s Australian wool auctions.

“It also rained across many of our wool growing regions, rounding out a rather good week for wool grower sellers,” he said.

“All types and descriptions were well sought, with the main focus of buyers again being the more highly specified lots containing lower levels of vegetable matter (VM).”

Mr Carmody said auctions only operated in the two eastern centres as Fremantle sat out, and the market was strong from the opening lot.

“Exporters had reported follow up business to last week’s firm contracts executed, with enquiry continuing right up to the close of selling on Tuesday.

“Prompt demand had appeared to have met some price resistance, and the overseas clients stopped showing interest to somewhat re-assess their positions,” he said.

“Upon sales opening on Wednesday, buyers commenced the day gauging competing buyers’ intent, but it was soon evident that the market still had a propensity to strengthen.

“Small gains were being registered on all types,” Mr Carmody said.

“Half way through the days selling though, the better tested lots shot upward.

“Orders were needing filling,” he said.

“Some individual lots in the 17 to 19micron range of Merino types became 40 cents dearer, particularly European spec sale lots.”

Mr Carmody said supply is starting to become more of a factor to overseas mills looking for direction.

“South Africa is close to their two month break, whilst the low volume Australian upcoming auctions are an issue.

“Perhaps the most significant supply concern though is the trend of wool production lowering, as evidenced by the latest AWTA figures.”

Fremantle returns to the selling program next week, bolstering the national offering. There are currently 33,814 bales expected be offered in Sydney, Melbourne and Fremantle. Sales will be held on Wednesday and Thursday to accommodate a public holiday on Monday in the eastern centres.

Click here to see the latest AWEX Micron Price Guides.

Sources – AWEX, AWI.

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