Industry News

Industry News

The fraught and disheartening 2019/20 season is drawing to a close. The season was a confidence-shattering disappointment after the two previous seasons in which prices rose sharply and hit record high levels, with the EMI averaging 1739 c/kg in 2017/18 and 1939 c/kg in 2018/19. Overall, the EMI fell by 605 c/kg from the close of the 2018/19 season to the close of the 2019/20 season, a 35% decline. It was also lower by 430 UScents/kg (-36%), 375 €cents/kg (-36%) and 2801 RMB/kg (-34%). All the regional indicators saw significant falls, with the Northern Market Indicator down by 571 c/kg, the Southern Market Indicator 627 c/kg lower and the Western Market Indicator down the most, falling by 656 c/kg. The EMI averaged 1448 c/kg for the season, down significantly from the average in 2018/19 and in 2017/18, but above the average for all seasons prior to 2017/18 (including the 1987/88 and 1988/89 seasons, albeit only in nominal terms).

All the AWEX Micron Price Guides fell over the 2019/20 season, with crossbred wool prices falling the most, down by as much as 57%.

The fall in wool prices is not surprising given the tremendously negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy and on the wool textile processing industry. The COVID-19 pandemic and the huge economic hit has affected the prices of many commodities, including textile fibres, and prices for the other major textile fibres fell in 2019/20. However, wool prices fell by a larger % than did the prices for cotton, acrylic, polyester and viscose. Of course, wool prices lifted by more than the prices for other fibres in 2017/18 and had further to fall.

Further details, including a chart showing the % change in wool, cotton, polyester, acrylic and viscose fibres, are provided in the full edition of the Weekly Newsletter. Available to NCWSBA members.

National Council of Wool Selling Brokers of Australia

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