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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


06 February 2014

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 6 February 2014Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 6 February 2014


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • During the past week rainfall was recorded in all states and territories, with the heaviest falls recorded across the north, west and centre of the country.

  • Long-term rainfall deficiencies have increased in severity across Queensland, north-eastern South Australia and the Upper Western District of New South Wales.

  • The severe heatwave conditions over south-eastern Australia have eased following a cold front and trough in the past week.

  • There has been a decline in upper layer soil moisture throughout much of the pastoral and cropping zone of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia during January 2014.

  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin have decreased by 519 gigalitres this week and are at 60 per cent of total capacity.

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$285 a tonne in the week ending 4 February 2014, compared with US$287 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) rose by around 4 per cent in the week ending 5 February 2014 to $355 a tonne.

  • The Global Dairy Trade weighted average price of whole milk powder increased to around US$5005 a tonne on 4 February 2014 compared with US$4943 a tonne on 21 January 2014, and the price of skim milk powder increased by around 1 per cent over the same period. By contrast, the price of cheese by fell around 3.9 per cent and the price of anhydrous milk fat fell by around 1.3 per cent over the same period.

  • Saleyard prices of lamb rose in all states in the week ending 31 January 2014. The largest increase occurred in Victoria, where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) rose by around 11 per cent to average 460 cents a kilogram. The indicator price rose: by around 8 per cent in New South Wales to average 464 cents a kilogram; by around 5 per cent in South Australia to 432 cents a kilogram; and by around 2 per cent in Western Australia to 462 cents a kilogram.

Climate

Notable events

  • During the past week rainfall was recorded in all states and territories, with the heaviest falls recorded across the north, west and centre of the country.

  • Long-term rainfall deficiencies for the 16-month period October 2012 to January 2014 have increased in severity across Queensland, north-eastern South Australia and the Upper Western District of New South Wales. Longer-term rainfall deficiencies for the 22-month period April 2012 to January 2014 have also increased in inland eastern Australia (Bureau of Meteorology ‘Drought Statement’, 4 February 2014).

  • The severe heatwave conditions over south-eastern Australia have eased during the past week. However, heatwave conditions are predicted to remain over South Australia, western New South Wales and parts of south-western Western Australia, and may recur in Victoria, Tasmania and eastern New South Wales later in the week (Bureau of Meteorology ‘Pilot Heatwave Forecast’, 5 February 2014).

  • January 2014 rainfall was extremely high across parts of the tropical north of the continent, and inland areas of Western Australia and the Northern Territory. In contrast, much of eastern, south-western and central Australia recorded below average rainfall during January 2014.

  • There has been a decline in upper layer soil moisture throughout much of the pastoral and cropping zone of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia during January 2014. In contrast, relative upper layer soil moisture levels in Western Australia and Northern Territory have improved.

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 5 February 2014, rainfall was recorded in all states and territories with significant falls over much of northern and central Australia and the cropping zone in Western Australia. The highest recorded rainfall total for the week was 500 millimetres at Walker Creek, south of Darwin in the Northern Territory. For further information go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the week ending 5 February 2014

©Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Australian Bureau of Meteorology           Issued: 05/02/2014

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$285 a tonne in the week ending 4 February 2014, compared with US$287 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world coarse grains indicator price (US No. 2 yellow corn, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$204 a tonne for the week ending 5 February 2014, compared with US$201 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$506 a tonne in the week ending 4 February 2014, compared with US$504 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US92.4 cents a pound in the week ending 5 February 2014, largely unchanged from the previous week.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US15.7 cents a pound in the week ending 5 February 2014, around 5 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • Data from the Brazilian Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade shows the country’s cumulative sugar exports in the first 10 months of the 2013-14 season (April to March) was 23.6 million tonnes (raw value), compared with 23.4 million tonnes exported over the same period last year.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) rose by around 4 per cent in the week ending 5 February 2014 to $355 a tonne.

  • The Australian feed barley indicator price (Sydney) rose by around 1 per cent in the week ending 5 February 2014 to $304 a tonne.

  • The Australian feed wheat indicator price (General purpose, Sydney) fell by around 1 per cent in the week ending 5 February 2014 to $315 a tonne.

  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) averaged $520 a tonne in the week ending 3 February 2014, compared with $518 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The wholesale prices of selected fruit were generally higher in the week ending 1 February 2014.

  • Changes to wholesale prices of selected vegetables were mixed in the week ending 1 February 2014. The wholesale price of pumpkin (grey bulk) was higher than the previous week while the prices of cauliflower and tomato (field gourmet) were lower.

  • The Queensland young cattle indictor price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) increased by around 2 per cent in the week ending 31 January 2014 to 314 cents a kilogram. Young cattle prices rose by around 1 per cent South Australia. By contrast, the indicator prices in Victoria and New South Wales both fell by around 5 per cent.

  • Saleyard prices of lamb rose in all states in the week ending 31 January 2014. The largest increase occurred in Victoria where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) rose by around 11 per cent to average 460 cents a kilogram. The indicator price rose: by around 8 per cent in New South Wales to average 464 cents a kilogram; by around 5 per cent in South Australia to 432 cents a kilogram; and by around 2 per cent in Western Australia to 462 cents a kilogram.

  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool was largely unchanged in the week ending 30 January 2014, averaging 1132 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at auction was around 18 per cent lower than the previous sale, largely reflecting the shortened trading week due to the Australia Day holiday.

  • The Global Dairy Trade weighted average price of whole milk powder increased to around US$5005 a tonne on 4 February 2014 compared with US$4943 a tonne on 21 January 2014 and the price of skim milk powder increased by around 1 per cent over the same period. By contrast, the price of cheese by fell around 3.9 per cent and the price of anhydrous milk fat fell by around 1.3 per cent over the same period.

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