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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


31 March 2014

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 27 March 2014Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 27 March 2014


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • Over the past week, rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres was recorded across large parts of eastern Australia, with the heaviest falls concentrated along the coast.

  • The rainfall forecast for the next eight days indicates that widespread rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres is likely across Australia’s tropical north, the eastern seaboard, near the border of Western Australia and South Australia and in Tasmania.

  • Rainfall received this week and what has been forecast for the next eight days across parts of eastern Australia is likely to be beneficial in the lead-up to the winter growing season.

  • While neutral El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions persist across the tropical Pacific Ocean, there is an increased chance that an El Niño climate pattern will form during 2014.

  • Drier than normal conditions are forecast over most of southern Queensland, north eastern New South Wales and parts of the northern Tropics during the next three months (April to June 2014).

  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin have decreased by 194 gigalitres this week and are at 52 per cent of total capacity.

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$351 a tonne in the week ending 25 March 2014, compared with US$334 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) rose by around 2 per cent in the week ending 26 March 2014 to $360 a tonne.

  • The saleyard prices of lamb fell in all states in the week ending 21 March 2014. The largest decline occurred in South Australia where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) fell by around 5 per cent to average 508 cents a kilogram. In the eastern states, the indicator price fell by around 2 per cent in both New South Wales and Victoria to average 571 cents a kilogram and 550 cents a kilogram, respectively. In Western Australia, the indicator price declined by around 3 per cent to average 469 cents a kilogram.

  • The Queensland young cattle indictor price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) fell by around 2 per cent in the week ending 21 March 2014 to 313 cents a kilogram. Young cattle prices fell by around 3 per cent in New South Wales to 350 cents a kilogram and increased by around 2 per cent in Victoria to 341 cents a kilogram.

Climate

Notable events

  • Over the past week, rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres was recorded across large parts of eastern Australia, with the heaviest falls concentrated along the coast. In contrast, most of Western Australia, South Australia, the Northern Territory, and western parts of New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria have received little to no rainfall during this time.

  • The rainfall forecast for the next eight days indicates that widespread rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres is likely across Australia’s tropical north, the eastern seaboard, near the border of Western Australia and South Australia and in Tasmania. While falls in excess of 50 millimetres have been forecast across far south-east Queensland and north-east New South Wales.

  • Rainfall received this week and what has been forecast for the next eight days across parts of eastern Australia is likely to be beneficial in the lead-up to the winter growing season, increasing soil moisture levels, promoting pasture growth and improving prospects for winter crops across many areas. However, these falls have raised some concern for cotton growers who have just commenced harvesting, with the possibility of rain damage resulting in downgrades and price penalties for this year’s crop.

  • While neutral El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO) conditions persist across the tropical Pacific Ocean, there is an increased chance that an El Niño climate pattern will form during 2014. The majority of climate models are forecasting El Niño conditions will eventuate during winter 2014 (Bureau of Meteorology ENSO ‘Wrap-up’, 25 March 2014).

  • Drier than normal conditions are forecast over most of southern Queensland, north eastern New South Wales and parts of the northern Tropics during the next three months (April to June 2014). While wetter than normal conditions are forecast for southern and central Western Australia. The temperature outlook indicates that warmer than normal day-time temperatures are forecast over most of the northern tropics, eastern Australia and along the southern coastline during the next three months. Warmer than normal night-time temperatures are forecast over most of Australia during the next three months. (Bureau of Meteorology 'National Seasonal Outlook', 26 March 2014).

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 26 March 2014, rain was mainly recorded in the tropical north, across most of eastern Australia and in Tasmania. The highest recorded rainfall total for the week was 622 millimetres at Daintree Village, near Cairns in Queensland. For further information go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

©Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Australian Bureau of Meteorology            Issued: 26/03/2014

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$351 a tonne in the week ending 25 March 2014, compared with US$334 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world coarse grains indicator price (US No. 2 yellow corn, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$220 a tonne for the week ending 26 March 2014, compared with US$224 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$574 a tonne in the week ending 25 March 2014, compared with US$580 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US97.7 cents a pound in the week ending 26 March 2014, largely unchanged from the previous week.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US17 cents a pound in the week ending 26 March 2014, around 2 per cent lower than the previous week.

  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool fell by around 2 per cent in the week ending 20 March 2014 to average of 1035 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at auction was around 4 per cent lower than the previous sale.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) rose by around 2 per cent in the week ending 26 March 2014 to $360 a tonne.

  • The Australian barley indicator price (Sydney) remained largely unchanged in the week ending 26 March 2014 at $318 a tonne.

  • The Australian feed wheat indicator price (General purpose, Sydney) rose by around 1 per cent in the week ending 26 March 2014 to $337 a tonne.

  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) fell by around 1 per cent in the week ending 26 March 2014 to $544 a tonne.

  • The Queensland young cattle indictor price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) fell by around 2 per cent in the week ending 21 March 2014 to 313 cents a kilogram. Young cattle prices fell by around 3 per cent in New South Wales to 350 cents a kilogram and increased by around 2 per cent in Victoria to 341 cents a kilogram.

  • The saleyard prices of lamb fell in all states in the week ending 21 March 2014. The largest decline occurred in South Australia where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) fell by around 5 per cent to average 508 cents a kilogram. In the eastern states, the indicator price fell by around 2 per cent in both New South Wales and Victoria to average 571 cents a kilogram and 550 cents a kilogram, respectively. In Western Australia, the indicator price declined by around 3 per cent to average 469 cents a kilogram.

  • The wholesale prices of selected fruit were generally lower in the week ending 22 March 2014. The wholesale prices of pineapple (smoothleaf), banana (cavendish), watermelon (seedless) and strawberry were lower than the previous week while the prices of blueberry and avocado (hass) were higher.

  • The wholesale prices of selected vegetables were generally lower in the week ending 22 March 2014.

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