The latest statistics from AWTA shows that the volume of wool tested in May slumped compared with a year ago. The number of bales tested was 28.5% lower than May 2018 and the weight of wool tested was 28.2% lower. That’s the largest year-on-year fall for any month since August 2003. The large drop will, in part, have been caused by the Covid-19 restrictions constraining shearing and a lack of immediacy for growers to get wool to market given the decline in wool prices (in contrast to May last year when the EMI was sitting at around 1900 c/kg). For the season to the end of May, the weight of wool tested was 7.6% lower than for the same period in the 2018/19 season.
Each of the micron ranges saw similar declines to the aggregate in May, with 18.5 micron & finer down by 28%, the 19-20 micron range 25% lower, the 21-24 micron category down by 30%, the 25-28 micron range down by 40% and the 29 micron & broader category down by 23%. All states also saw large drops in the weight of wool tested (as measured by Wool Statistical Area), led by South Australia (down by 47%), Victoria (down by 33%), Tasmania (down 27%) and New South Wales (down 25%). Western Australia and Queensland saw more moderate (although still large) declines of 15% and 14% respectively.
Further details, including a chart showing the year-on-year % change in the weight of wool tested by month back to July 2012 as well as the 12-month moving average of the % change, is contained in the full edition of the NCWSBA Weekly Newsletter. Available to NCWSBA members.