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Livestock Manager’s Report

It may seem like a case of  deja-vu but this weeks highlights all hinge again around store stock. Today I travelled through to Quoiba store cattle sale and the buzz around the yards is that it is the dearest store cattle market that many have ever experienced!! Of the total yarding of 416 cattle the yard average came in at $1,156 per head and is easily in the vicinity of $100 plus more than a fortnight ago. Next week we will line up at Powranna Marketing Complex (Thursday) to some very attractive lines of vendor bred cattle for competition.

On the other store front yesterday saw a large line of 35kg liveweight 2nd cross store lambs offered on Auctionsplus to realise $112 per head!! An extraordinary result for young lambs, but showing confidence in  the industry  moving forward. Young breeding ewes realised over the $200 mark again also showing confidence in sheep into the future.

Next Friday Roberts will yard just on 4,000 store crossbred lambs at our Oatlands Sheep Marketing Complex with some excellent lines of 2nd cross lambs and store merino sheep on offer.

In the prime markets cows saw the biggest lift this week gaining 25-30 cents per kg liveweight, while young cattle all held their pace. Lambs remain firm, while mutton sheep continue their strength and are selling to excellent rates with very few sheep selling under $80 per head.

Yesterday Cremorne Suffolk and White Suffolks went up for auction with a great result of 44 White Suffolks averaging $980 while the 6 Suffolk rams offered averaged $817 per head. This concludes the Terminal Sire sales for a while; next week we have 3 days of Merino ram sales .

  • Wednesday Okehampton Merino 1.30pm
  • Thursday Trefusis Merino 2.30pm
  • Friday Campbelltown Merino and Poll Merino 1pm

As always, please shoot any questions through to me at

Tasmanian Merino Success Story!

A great success story for our Tasmanian Merino Brand – as featured in AWI’s December edition of Beyond the Bale. Click Here to view the entire publication.


Weekly Wool Report


Wool Manager’s Report

The question this week was whether or not the market could consolidate after last week’s sharp rise, with the answer being yes. With Melbourne selling on Tuesday in isolation, it was the finer, well specified lots that came under the most scrutiny, adding 15-20 cents clean to last week’s levels. The medium merino types were basically unchanged for the day and in what is somewhat of a reversal in trend the crossbred market added 5 cents on the day.

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of spending some time with representatives from a large Chinese mill on their visit to Tasmania. It was very interesting to hear from them about how they see the current market and what impact the recent increases in price has had on their business. Of course you would expect to hear that the higher price wouldn’t necessarily be welcomed, but it would be safe to say their approach was slightly more pragmatic. While the perceived resistance point of an EMI trading at or above 1,000 cents clean in US is true, the fact that the basis (price between various micron categories) is restoring to what might be considered more of an historically normal level is a positive.

This makes perfect sense if you consider the fact that spinners, knitters and weavers, along with garment makers and retailers are trying to justify a price difference in their product range. A crude way of describing this would be that when the cost of raw materials is virtually the same, regardless of the micron of the wool used, it is very hard for these late stage processors to clearly define a price differential.

So while this particular company is price sensitive, just like the majority of manufacturers are, there was some degree of positivity in regard to the current market direction.

With only 2 weeks of selling left between now and Christmas we will be watching closely to see if the market can continue to hold. Shipping deadlines will play a part in this, with one exporter telling me today that they thought the market could drift later next week and into the following week. This will depend on whether the lack of supply wins out and holds, or even strengthens the market, time will tell!

Livestock Manager’s Report

Store stock is the flavour of the week again with demand for store lambs and cattle at its peak.

Yesterday saw a line of Border/Merino wether lambs (new season) offered on AuctionsPlus weighing approx 36 kg live weight selling to $103 per head whilst aged merino wethers all exceeding scale prices with both restockers and processors in the buying book. Next week will see young breeding ewes and store lambs offered on AuctionsPlus again for anyone looking for quality sheep.

Prime markets remain the same this week with no change in prices across the board .

Clearing sales are in full swing with three listed again for next week:

  • Forcett (Wednesday)
  • Brown Mountain (Thursday)
  • Longford (Friday)

For full listing please Click Here or view in Today’s Tas Country.

More ram sales this week with some great results, see below:

Blackwood Corriedale  $            1,400.00 37 1,032
Quamby Plains Corriedale  $            1,800.00 34 1,063
Melton Vale    $            1,900.00 75 943
Palmerston Coopworth  $            2,300.00 138 1,259
Rodbourne White Suffolk  $            1,400.00 39 997
Rodbourne Poll Dorset  $            1,800.00 18 945

Next Friday – Quioba Store cattle sale will be on (600 cattle) and Cremorne Ram sale next Wednesday.

As always, please shoot any questions or topics you’d like covered through to Warren at

Wool Manager’s Report

Another large offering this week with Melbourne selling over 3 days and both Sydney and Fremantle operating on Wednesday and Thursday. Over 49,000 bales were offered and the market managed to perform well.

One of the key drivers at this point in time is the slide in the currency over the last two weeks; basically sliding 4 cents or a bit over 5%. And while we’ve seen good gains in the wool market over the last two weeks there is still some upside in US terms. You may recall I mentioned the EMI in US terms having a 1,000 usc ceiling from early July this year. We broke through it recently but only lasted there a couple of days before retracing. We know by now that the market never realizes the full effect of a falling AUD immediately but the encouraging thing is that we know that China have the appetite to drive our market up to that point. So barring a rapid and consistent trend upwards in the currency, wool has a bit more room to move dearer in the short term.

Supply is still an issue – we’ve had above average clearance rates, so the cupboard is bare from that point of view; plus the fact that we’re only 3 weeks away from the Christmas recess. Stocks around the world are low for wool top and yarn which is another positive. All in all we remain buoyant about the short term. Keeping in mind that 19’s are trading in the 100th percentile of the last 5 years. 17’s are close behind in the 95th. It’s also important to note that all MPG’s are gaining ground, so the new found premiums we’re seeing for micron are maintaining – over 100 cents clean between 19.0 micron and 20.0 micron means that buyers aren’t just chasing wool at a price.

We’ve received further enquiry this week for 2 containers of 100% Tasmanian Merino. It is out of China and we’re trying to steer them away from being price focused, the really encouraging thing is that people are coming to us from all wool consuming countries now. And ultimately we are under no obligation to accept their price point if we don’t believe there to be a satisfactory premium for the Tasmanian story. We’re moving towards being price setters not price takers – for the first time ever. It’s been a long road getting to this point, but we knew it would take time to develop sustainable long term partnerships, rather than a flash in the pan, or worse still, marketing spin. We’re in this for Tasmanian wool growers, and we will continue to drive this on behalf of the Tasmanian industry. Please forward any enquires to

Livestock Manager’s Report

Livestock this week saw a similar trend to previous weeks. On the processing front, prime cattle and lambs held their ground and store stock (cattle and lambs) all receiving strong competition with both local and interstate demand out there for both. Today saw 800 store cattle offered at Quoiba to an incredibly strong market with the yard average of $1,064 per head!! For store stock enquiries contact your local Roberts Livestock agent to expose yourself to maximum competition.

Ram sales have continued this week with ‘Sunnybanks’ on Monday selling 27 Poll Dorset Rams to top $1,300 with an average price of $814; 19 White Suffolk Rams to top $1,700 with an average of $868 and 9 Charollais Rams to top $1,400 and an aveerage of $811.

Tuesday’s offering comprised of ‘Penrise Stud’ offering 61 White Suffolk Rams to average $958; 23 Poll Dorsets to average $641; 5 Southdowns averaging $800 and 2 Suffolks to average $700. ‘Killara’ sold 9 Poll Dorsets to average $775 per head.

Wednesday saw ‘Maccleslie Park’ sell 22 Poll Dorset Rams to average $868; 10 White Suffolks averaging $610; 14 Southdowns averaing $993 and 23 Border Leicester rams averaging $956 per head. ‘Noble Lee’ sold 12 Suffolk Rams to average $833 per head.

Finally today we have just completed Stockman Merino Ram sale with 46 Rams sold topping $8600 with an average of$1,460 per head.

More Ram sales next week (See Tas country for full details) plus 3 clearing sales again with all details in today’s Tas Country and also further down in this newsletter.

Today saw 800 store cattle offered at Quoiba to an incredibly strong market. With the yard average of $1,064 per head

As always, don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions at

Weekly Wool Report


Wool Manager’s Report

This week I am again focusing on the crossbred end of the market in an attempt to highlight the significant change we have seen in demand and subsequently the price being received.

12 months or so ago the crossbred market was operating in somewhat of a bubble, we were seeing prices reach unprecedented levels on the back of retail demand for double sided fabrics used in things like overcoats. As is the case in most commodity markets, sentiment was driving the price, rather than more sustainable “pull through” demand and we are now seeing the hangover from this.

My information coming out of China is that there are a number of mills that are holding high levels of crossbred wool that was purchased 6-12 months ago and now they are finding it very difficult to move it on.

The graph below shows the 25 micron and 28 micron price guides. While in recent weeks you can see some correlation between the two, if you look back over the past 12-18 months there is a definite trend occurring in the 28 micron (and broader) categories. The old saying “the trend is your friend” is highlighted here and should not be discounted.



Melbourne sold in isolation on Tuesday with the market responding to the lower exchange rate and adding 5-10 cents, depending on type. Wednesday saw the other centres open and the market continued on, adding a further 5-10 cents clean, with the well specified fine and superfine lots most affected.

Forecast volumes have increased slightly for the next few weeks, with roughly 50,000 bales rostered nationally next week and the week after. There are only 4 selling weeks left this year, so hopefully we can see the market get through to Christmas unscathed.

As always, please contact me at if you have any questions or comments.



Weekly Wool Report


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