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Wool market closes on firm note
Jun '08
The Australian wool market finished 0.3% higher, on average, at one day sales on Wednesday in Sydney and Melbourne this week

The AWEX EMI rose by 3¢ (+0.3%), ending the week at 873¢/kg. This reflected rises of 1¢ (+0.1%) in the North and 4¢ (+0.5%) in the South, with their corresponding Regional Indicators finishing the week at 912¢ and 840¢ clean, respectively. The Western Indicator remained unchanged at 847¢, as there was no sale in Fremantle this week.

19,646 bales were on offer in the smallest sale of the season, compared with 30,392 bales last week (when all three regions sold), of which 7.3% were passed in, comprised of 6.5% in Sydney and 7.9% in Melbourne. Pass-in rates for Merino fleece and skirtings were 8.8% and 3.7%, respectively. 987 bales (4.8%) were withdrawn prior to sale and re-offered bales made up 16.0% of this week's offering.

The US exchange rate (source RBA) was 0.15¢ higher on Monday when compared with Thursday of last week. It was then up by a further 0.33¢ on Tuesday and down by 0.12¢ on Wednesday to close at 94.15¢, up 0.36¢ (+0.4%) since the last sale. The exchange rate against the Euro rose by 0.21 Euro cents (+0.3%) to close at 60.84 Euro cents on Wednesday night. When looked at in other currencies, the AWEX EMI moved up by 6¢ (+0.7%) in US terms and by 4¢ (+0.8%) in Euro terms when compared with the previous sale.

The market firmed on the stronger note of last week with increases across all types and across a number of micron ranges. Competition for the better lots (including some Spinners types in the South) was again strong, with the typical less support for the low yielding and poorer type wools.

Micron Price Guides (MPGs) for 16.5, 17.0 and 17.5 microns were only quoted in the South where they rose by 2¢, 4¢ and 6¢, respectively.

For other wools at the fine end, their average MPGs were down by 5¢ for 18.0 microns, by 4¢ for 18.5 microns, by 6¢ for 19.0 microns and by 2¢ for 19.5 microns. There was a North/South difference in the 19.5 micron range with the Indicator falling by 8¢ in the North and rising by 4¢ in the South. The 20.0 micron wool average MPG was up by 2¢ clean, 21.0 microns by 5¢, 22.0 microns by 3¢, 23.0 microns by 3¢, and 24.0 microns by 6¢.

Skirtings were in very strong demand, as reflected in the low pass-in rate of 3.7%. Oddments were also in good demand, with average Merino Cardings MPG rising by 3¢. Crossbred MPGs were up by around 3¢ on average apart from the 28 micron wool in the South where the MPG came back by 14¢.

Once again, the majority of the wool was bought by buyers for China, with strong support from buyers for India.

Sales will be held in Sydney, Melbourne and Fremantle next week, when 40,247 bales are currently rostered for sale. Present estimates for the following two sales prior to the break vary from 37,585 to 46,695 bales, a decrease of 1.1% over the three sale period when compared with last year.

South African sales are in recess until 20 August.

Australian Wool Innovation Limited

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