What are we putting in the budget for lamb?

It’s tax planning and budget time. A question we get every year is ‘what should I put in the budget for lambs? It’s not quite opaque as ‘how long is a piece of string?’, as we do have some fundamental information to use to have a crack. Trying to forecast a range for spring and […]

What does the frost in the Black Sea have to do with me?

What does frost in Russia have to do with the price of wheat in Dooen? Quite a bit. Of all the commodity markets Australian farmers deal in, it is grain which reacts the quickest to global supply and demand shifts. Regular readers will know that there have been some production issues in Russia and Ukraine, […]

Summer rains impact cattle slaughter

The quarterly Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Livestock Products report was released last week. Livestock Products is where we get our official slaughter numbers for the quarter, and despite the quarter finishing six weeks ago, it’s worth a look. March is traditionally the weakest slaughter quarter of the year, with a slow start and public […]

Another year, another increase in oilseed production.

The world is seemingly producing more oilseeds every year. At least for the last six years, the upward trend in oilseed production has been in place, and the United States Department of Agriculture are forecasting yet another record in 2024-25. The year on year changes in wheat and corn world production were relatively small, at […]

Reassessing a ‘good’ price for mutton

Last week Mecardo looked at the mutton market, and how it related to the levels of last year. This week we take a deeper dive into pricing and long-term supply, and how we might have to reassess what is a ‘good’ mutton price. The anecdotal evidence suggests that mutton isn’t hard to move for exporters, […]

Benign May WASDE

Wheat plants _ image

It’s May and the new season World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is out. The WASDE is the most trusted document in terms of looking at the supply and demand of major commodities, and will often move markets if it significantly diverges from expectations. The May […]

Getting good prices while avoiding volatility

Pouring of grain from above

Grain and oilseed markets are showing some good old-fashioned spring (in the northern hemisphere) volatility. We know that springtime dryness can grow into real production cuts, so pricing short-term is fraught. It does open the option to kick the can down the road. Chicago Soft Red Wheat (SRW) Futures have been strong in the last […]

A good time to trade cattle?

Angus Cattle

While much of NSW and Southern Queensland has received above-average rainfall in April, some key cattle areas in Western Victoria, South Australia and WA have missed out. The market is treading water, and there might be a trading opportunity on the cards. A look at the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) and the National Feeder […]

How do the size of yardings move prices in Wagga

Mob of sheep moving in dusty yard

Talk to any farmer or local agent, and they will tell you that local supply has an impact on local prices. Many a grower will hear the yarding is going to be big and worry about prices falling, or vice versa. Does a strong price move encourage more lambs into the yards? Here we crunch […]

Moving in the right direction

Canola field

The worm seems to have turned somewhat in the grain and oilseed complex. While there is some short-term support coming from yet more geopolitical unrest, some fundamentals are also on the move. With the wheat hedging window theoretically closed, rising prices now are approached with caution. Figure 1 shows the jump we’ve seen in wheat […]

Cattle price volatility lower as supply and demand find balance

Cattle market volatility has waned recently. The wild swings of 2023 saw prices move up to 70% across the course of two months. Thus far in 2024, we have seen prices shift, but the size of the moves is small compared to 2022 and 2023. The Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) has started 2024 in […]

Exchange rates helping wheat values

The exchange rate has been in the news lately, with the Australian dollar falling to a six-month low last week. Given this, we thought it was time to revisit how exchange rates can impact the price of grain commodities here. Figure 1 shows the Aussie dollar has steadied in 2024, but broadly continues the downward […]