Wool volumes approaching high tide?

Bales of wool in shed

Buoyed by the recent market activity, a significant wool clip was put forward this week including a feature sale of Tasmanian wool. There was a lot for buyers to sift through and the result was a downturn in the Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) and an increase in pass-in rates nationwide. Despite this, the market still cleared over 47 000 bales, its highest since July 2022 as buyers seek best quality fleece.

This week the Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) lost 26ȼ to 1374ȼ/kg. The Australian dollar was also down, finishing at US$0.68.  The EMI when expressed in US$ was down 30ȼ/kg to 945ȼ/kg (US).  

In the North and South, the market turned on tuesday with an uptick in supply causing prices across the majority of categories to fall. The market steadied on Wednesday as buyers rallied late chasing well-prepared lots. 16.5 micron in Melbourne was the only MPG in the fine and medium categories to improve this week; up 20 ȼ/kg to finish at 2508 ȼ/kg, supported by the offerings included in the Tasmanian feature sale. 

Buyers in the West had a lot of volume to handle which resulted in a decline in prices across categories on Tuesday. There was a recovery on Wednesday on the back of withdrawn lots prior to the opening, and the Western Market Indicator (WMI) finished the week at 1525ȼ/kg, down 45ȼ.

The 18 MPG was down 72ȼ to 2003 ȼ /kg in Sydney and down 49ȼ to 2032 ȼ /kg in Melbourne.

Crossbreds were the good news story of the week, with most categories higher.  32 MPG in Melbourne finished the week up 15ȼ to 260ȼ/kg.

Cardings were steady in Sydney (926 ȼ) and Melbourne (922 ȼ) up by 2 in both markets, and Fremantle was down 28 ȼ to 923 ȼ/kg.  

The offering was substantial with 57,196 bales offered.  The pass-in rate was up over 10 percentage points to 16.6%. The pass in rate reached 27% in the Western market.

Despite the higher pass in rate and withdrawals of lots, sales volumes increased 3% week-on-week as 47,689 bales were sold, still significantly above the average weekly sale volume this season of 35K bales.

This week on Mecardo, Andrew Woods investigates seasonal variations of vegetable matter in fleece.  The market is currently approaching a period of increased vegetable matter (VM) in fleece which has been exacerbated by the prevailing seasonal conditions. Whilst this is consistent with historical patterns, increased supply of high VM fleece could lead to discounts for such fleece.

The week ahead….

There is another significant offering of 57, 321 bales planned for next week.  Melbourne will have an additional Thursday sale on top of the Tuesday and Wednesday sales in the other markets.

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Data sources: AWEX, AWI, Mecardo

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