Australian Wool Market Slides in Opening Week
July 6, 2018

This week marked the start of the 2018-19 wool selling season as the sale corresponds with the beginning of the new financial year and is traditionally one of the larger sales on the roster. Sellers holding wool for tax purposes entered the market, and wool held for the new selling season was significant. Wool older than 180 days represented just more than a third of the national offering (and nearly 57 percent of the western region offering).

This year in the opening sale, 43,880 bales were offered to the trade. The softer market tone that was evident in the previous sale, was apparent from the outset and corrections were felt across the entire merino spectrum, on all types and descriptions. As is often the case in a falling market, it was off-style types, wools with poor additional measurement results and those carrying excessive vegetable matter that were most affected.

By the end of the week, prices had generally fallen by 50 to 90 Australian cents, with some off-style types more than 120 cents cheaper. The benchmark Eastern Market Indicator lost 62 cents for the series, closing at 1,994 Australian cents. This was the largest weekly fall in the EMI since August 2012.

Many sellers were reluctant to accept the reduction in prices, and this was reflected in a national passed in rate in of more than 15 percent - up 9 percent on the previous week. The skirtings also suffered large corrections as prices generally fell by 50 to 100 Australian cents. Lots carrying more than 5 percent vegetable matter were the most affected.

Although the oddments attracted excellent buyer support, most types fell by 5 to 15 Australian cents. Wool finer than 18.5 micron was the least affected.

Next week is the final sale before the annual mid-year, three-week recess.

Source: AWEX