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The end of the season produced a softer market with the Merino fleece the main culprit although the increased offering across the three selling centres didn’t help. With a larger offering, the clearance rate and pass-in rate were all higher this week was the highest pass-in rate since August 2023.

The Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) lost a further 18¢ this week, to settle at 1142¢/kg, just 16¢/kg to the good of the starting level for the season. However, if you were looking for a positive it was the additional 5,371 bales cleared to buyers compared to last week’s volume. The EMI expressed in US$ remained unchanged at 763, reinforcing the downward effect the slightly stronger $US had on the market.

In Fremantle, the market quickly fell into step with the East Coast levels on Tuesday, with falls across the MPG’s. This resulted in a significant volume withdrawn on Wednesday before the sale opening, which provided some support for the market.

Falls in the range between -11¢/kg (20 MPG) and -49¢/kg (18 MPG) were experienced in Melbourne and Sydney, while in Fremantle the range was -18¢/kg (21 MPG) and -28¢/kg (18 MPG) and.

Cardings were also down, -4¢/kg in Sydney, -7¢/kg in Melbourne and -15¢/kg in Fremantle.

Again, the Crossbred section reported that better prepared lots were well supported while poor clip preparation was punished, overall though the crossbred sector held steady on last week’s levels.

With a larger offering, the pass-in rate increased to 11.5% nationally, as also did the clearance rate to see 32,861 bales sold. For the season 2023-24, the average clearance per week was 37,753, compared to the previous season of 36,914 per week.

Fibre prices have trended lower in deflated terms in recent decades, except where quality has changed. This week on Mecardo, Andrew Woods had a look at how various commodities have performed (read here). It makes interesting reading, whereas 2019 was a very good year for Australian agricultural commodity prices in relation to 2003-2005, in 2024 prices are generally lower.  

Next week

Next week’s sale will be the first for the 2024/25 season with 36,653 bales currently rostered across all three centres.

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Data sources: AWEX, AWI, Mecardo

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