The bull run for fine merinos continues. It’s difficult not to sound like a broken record at the moment. Supply is tight, demand is strong, forward prices are in record territory we’ve touched on all of these things over the last few months. It is worth noting that China are playing a major role in this market right now. Obviously, it’s fantastic that the market is being driven to new highs on the back of this, but lurking in the back of everyone’s minds is they can simply turn the tap off at any stage – I don’t need to remind the state’s crossbred producers of that. We know that no market goes up forever, but we are ahead of the game, if 17.0’s collapsed $3.00 per kg they would still be over 2000 cents clean.
Moving off the market though, we have received further enquiry overnight for 100% Tasmanian Merino Non Mulesed. Micron range is between 16.8 and 18.2. the client would like delivery by October this year. I can confidently say this one of the “rarest” types available, we know that the rarer something is the more highly sought and more valuable. So I would like to put the call out to any Tasmanian grower that may have wool within that micron range and is Non Mulesed, or Ceased Mulesed, that is shearing between now and October to let us know.
Supply will start to tighten further from now on, there are 46000 bales rostered for sale next week with two day sales in all three centers. A nice Tasmanian catalogue next week so we look forward to the demand for Tasmanian Merino being demonstrated at Auction.
If you have any enquires or are shearing finer NM or CM merinos in coming months please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
With some renewed interest in the crossbred end of the market in recent weeks I thought it would be prudent to focus on some of the fundamentals determining price at the moment.
As has been reported regularly over the past 6 months or so, the price being received for the broader end of the clip has been disappointing when compared to what was on offer 18 months ago. While this is the case, there is still a clear financial benefit to prepare and class a crossbred clip as a way of taking advantage of the price differentials, or basis as it is known between microns.
Within an average 28 micron clip, assuming there are some numbers to play with, there is wool produced that would be closer to 26 micron on one end and 30-32 micron on the other end.
26 micron last week was quoted at 1000 cents per kgs clean, 28 micron at 750 and 32 micron at 435 cents, a difference of 565 cents between the fine and broad end. If we also include 25 micron in the mix (1110 cents) the spread is relatively significant.
Quoting these numbers is fine, but individual circumstances need to be taken into account, such as total number of sheep to be shorn, the breed of sheep, the variation within the flock etc.
The market this week has continued on in the same vein as recent weeks with the finer merino fleece types adding another 20-30 cents to the already high levels, mid microns adding 5-10 cents and cardings and crossbreds unchanged.
The volume of wool coming to market is slowing and this should help hold the market at, or above these levels for the short term anyway, I hope!
Sales are rostered for all three centres next week with 46,000 bales on offer, followed by 42,000 bales the following week.
If you have any questions or would like a particular topic covered please feel free to email me on email@example.com
Following last week’s sharp jump in prices the market was tipped to be somewhat more contained this week with buyers and exporters reporting that they were finding a level of resistance at last week’s close.
Trading opened on Tuesday with Melbourne selling in isolation, where we saw prices again firm, albeit not to the same extremes as we saw last week. Finer merino types again led the way adding a further 25-30 cents clean, while the medium qualities increased by 10-15 cents and crossbred types 5-10 cents.
In early market reporting on Wednesday the market in Melbourne consolidated somewhat, with some types unchanged, while the superfine lots were slightly dearer on the day before. Sydney and Fremantle opened their accounts and basically played catch up on Melbourne’s rises from Tuesday.
Due to a communication error, unfortunately last week’s report was not published. In that I mentioned the attractive prices available into the future to hedge against any downside price risk.
We are now seeing liquidity in the forward market out as far as January/February 2019 in the 19 micron category, with one trade being done last week at 1600 cents clean. While this price is a significant discount from the current, nearly 1900 cent spot price, history would suggest it remains a pretty good level. We are also seeing multiple trades in mid/late 2018 in the 1650 range, depending on maturity.
On another positive note, this week we had a visit to Tasmania from marketing representatives from what would be considered one of Australia’s most iconic fashion labels, certainly of the last 30 years anyway.. The reason for their visit was to understand more about where the product they are using comes from and how it was produced so they can then tell their customers on our behalf. This is particularly satisfying as it only further reiterates my strong belief that as Tasmanian wool growers we have a wonderful story to tell and consumers are crying out to hear it.
This customer will be launching their menswear range for Winter in May/June when we will hear more about the source of the raw material.
Sales will be held in all three centres next week with just over 45,000 bales on offer.
For any further queries please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Just when we thought the wool market was starting to show signs of consolidating and maybe heading sideways, this week’s relatively small offering held over two days put questions to rest. The market opened on Wednesday with all three selling centres in operation with gusto, with all merino types quoted 40 to 50 cents dearer on last weeks close. Where we have seen most of the pressure in the fine and superfine categories in recent weeks, this week it was the medium merino sector that lead the way, with 18.5 through to 21 micron all adding 50+ cents for the day.
As is the case when the market sees such a jump in a single selling session all qualities respond, with the poorer testing lots (longer, lower staple strength) playing a bit of catch up on the European types as buyers scramble for any quantity they can.
I was talking to one of the largest buyers following Wednesday’s sale and he told me they sold everything they purchased into China within 1 hour of the auction closing which points to another solid session on Thursday to conclude the weekly offering.
I had reason to be at AWI head office earlier in the week and in the discussions I had with the CEO, he informed me that at the recent retail launches and showcases he had attended in the northern hemisphere promoting autumn winter 18/19 (18-20 months away) he had never seen so much wool featured. This should bode well for some sustainability in the prices over coming months.
On another note, we are seeing a lot of activity in the forward market at the moment, particularly in the 19 micron category. One trade stood out to me this week when a grower hedged their downside risk for January 2019 at 1600 cents clean. While this price is a 240 cent discount to the spot market, we have only sold 19 micron wool at above this price for about 4 months in the last 6 years and two of those months are in 2017. It makes for an interesting thought.
Next week sales are rostered in all three centres selling 42,000 bales over 2 days.
For any queries please contact email@example.com
47,000 bales were rostered for sale this week, with Melbourne selling in isolation on Tuesday, then all three centers in action Wednesday and Thursday. The merinos continue to push to new highs, while basically unchanged on Tuesday they firmed between 5 and 20 cents on Wednesday. There was also some positivity in the xbred sector for the first time in a long while with 28’s firming over 20 cents in early trade. The most encouraging thing is the xbreds managed gains despite the strong AUD. At the time of writing this report the AUD is sitting a shade over 77 us cents which almost equals it’s highest point in 3 months, in actual fact the strongest it’s been in the last year is 78 cents for a fleeting moment. You may recall we spoke several times about the 1000 usc ceiling for the EMI between June of last year and Christmas, well now it’s at 1115 and in a steep upward trend.
From a selection point of view we’re in the change over period, VM increasing, along with midpoint breaks. Exporters with some foresight will start actively accumulating fleece wool testing under 1% vm as they will be like hen’s teeth in 3 or 4 weeks time. The challenge they will face is buying and holding stock at record price levels.
From a historical point of view wools on the wrong side of specification aren’t being discounted as much as usual, this is a natural result of an extremely strong market and the “bottom end” being forced up as buyers try to secure wool at a price. Another influencing factor is the interest in fine wool tops, the early stage processors take less notice of greasy test results as they put together processing lots to hit a wool top specification. The good news for Tasmanian growers is that there are now several topmakers making 100% TASMANIAN wool tops, which explains the enormous money being paid for skirtings etc in our February catalogue.
The question on everyone’s lips is how long this bull run can continue, not just for wool but beef and lamb as well. One thing is for certain nothing lasts forever, I still think we can maintain these wool levels for a little while yet, supply will start to disappear in about 4 weeks time which hopefully protects any downside. As always please forward any enquires directly to firstname.lastname@example.org