It was another very strong market this week, following on from the previous week. Trade reports indicate that Wednesday’s market closed on the highest prices of the day and that it was a similar situation on Thursday. The strength of closing prices on Thursday was very evident in Fremantle, where the WMI gained 28¢ for the day compared with a 15¢ gain in the Eastern Market Indicator (EMI).
The Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) has picked up 108¢ and the WMI, 130¢, over the last four sales. One point of note was increased buying activity for Europe in addition to the strong demand from China. The gains were confined to the Merino wools, where there further good gains across all micron ranges and types on both days. The greatest daily gains occurred on the fine wools on Thursday, particularly in Sydney. The overall gains among the fine wools were the best for the week, as they have been in recent weeks.
The fine wools are now back to, or very close to, their prices at the start of the season and are well above their season low prices. The changes in fine wool average Micron Price Guide (MPGs) from their low point to this week range from +149¢ at 19.5 microns to +231¢ for 16.5 microns.
The recent price gains have substantially reduced the year-on-year differences and the changes since the start of the season in the Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) and the WMI. The Eastern Market Indicator (EMI) is now 167¢ (-13.7%) less than in the same week last year and is 22¢ (-2.1%) less than at the start of the season. The WMI is 135¢ (-11.2%) less than in the same week last year and is 7¢ (-0.7%) less than at the start of the season.
It was a good week in other countries also. The South African Cape Wools Indicator was up by 3.2% in Rand and by 2.5% in US currency since last week. In New Zealand, the Wool Services International Indicators were quoted as up by 10% to 15% for Merino Fleece, 5% to 7.5% dearer for fine Crossbred Fleece and 3% to 5% dearer for good style coarse Crossbred Fleece.
It was a lesser week among other fibres, with cotton Futures losing most, but not all, of last week’s gains. December Futures closed at 72.42 US¢ on Friday, down by 5.8% since the previous week.
40,634 bales were on offer, compared with 48,765 bales last week. 3.7% were passed in, comprised of 2.6% in Sydney, 3.0% in Melbourne and 6.6% in Fremantle. Pass-in rates for Merino fleece and skirtings were 2.3% and 2.8%, respectively.
39,128 bales were cleared to the trade. The year-to-date offering is 59,735 bales less (-9.6%) than at the end of the same week last year. The recent price rises are attracting additional wool onto the market. Next week’s expected offering of 52,800 bales is the season’s largest and is 4,000 bales up on the brokers’ estimate week’s a week ago. If the expected offerings over the next three weeks are achieved, the year-on-year difference will move to -5% to -6%.
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