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Month: December 2016

Weekly Wool Report


Wool Manager’s Report

In what was the last sale of the calendar year the market performed very well. It was the largest offering for the season to date with 55,000 bales rostered for sale nationally. Despite the very large offering and the impending 3 week recess the market firmed in early trade. All merino price guides were in the order of 10 cents dearer whilst 28 microns limped into the line. This final sale finished in the same vein of the last 12 months, merinos strong, crossbreds not. To put some numbers around that in January 17.0s were trading around 1,500 clean they closed this week around 1,760. 20.0s started the year at 1,330, and closed at 1,480. Crossbreds went the opposite way, opening at 840 and finishing up at 685. That means the micron spread between 20.0 and 28.0 has grown from 490 cents to 800, a dramatic shift to say the least. Interestingly cardings have remained very solid throughout the year closing out at around 1,140 clean, this points to some real stability in this sector and illustrates that the market has gotten used to this price point. This is in line with what we have been saying for a while that with global casualization knitwear is as popular as ever.

We would also like to acknowledge the resounding success of the Stud Merino Breeder’s multi vendor sale at Campbell Town last week. An unbelievable crowd and very strong support. Well done to the committee for renewing this event it looks poised to continue into the future.

Finally we would like to wish everyone a safe and merry Christmas, try to buy something woollen for a loved one (socks??)!! It’s the perfect time to support our industry and every little bit helps.

Sales will be in recess for 3 weeks, recommencing on Monday the 9th of January.

Please e-mail with any questions.

Roberts Building The Future Awards!


Please e-mail Josh Sattler for further information on these awards at

Weekly Wool Report


Wool Manager’s Report

The question I raised last week about whether or not the wool market could get through the last two weeks of selling before the Christmas recess were answered on Tuesday. Unfortunately the strong run we had experienced over the past few weeks came to an abrupt end this week with all categories sharply cheaper. Most merino types, whether it be fleece or skirtings, lost between 40 and 50 cents clean for the day; basically retracing last week’s gains.

According to those in the trade the trend remains relatively positive, however it was the noticeable pull back by two of the larger Chinese indent buyers that drove the market down. I simply cannot understand this logic (similarly neither can many wool exporters) as the same two buyers who pushed the market north have now contributed to the write down of their own stock on hand, hardly smart business.

A significant contributor to the change in sentiment this week was the forecast coming out on Monday showing over 55,000 bales rostered for this week and next; a shock that the market couldn’t absorb.

Having said all of that, I had two buyers make comment to me this week in regard to the increased demand they are seeing for Tasmanian origin wool. They both commented that while the general market was cheaper, the Roberts catalogue was barely effected. These comments are reassuring, and show that the significant work we are doing is benefiting the Tasmanian wool industry as a whole.

Tasmanian wool is quickly becoming the purchase of choice for many downstream customers and if the level of inquiry we are seeing is anything to go by, it should only continue to grow.

As always please send through any comments or questions to

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!

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