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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


03 April 2014

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 3 April 2014Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 3 April 2014


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • For the second week in a row rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres was recorded across a large part of eastern Australia.

  • March rainfall was average to extremely high across most of the eastern Australian wheat sheep belt, which is likely to lead to increased soil moisture profiles in a number of regions.

  • The rainfall forecast for the next eight days indicates there will be a broad band of rainfall from the north-east to the south-west of the country.

  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin increased this week by 32 gigalitre (GL) 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$345 a tonne in the week ending 1 April 2014, compared with US$351 a tonne in the previous week.

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

  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330–400 kg live weight C3) increased by 1.6 per cent in the week ending 28 March 2014 to 318 cents a kilogram. Young cattle prices rose in New South Wales by around 7 per cent to 375 cents a kilogram and also rose in Victoria by around 4 per cent to 354 cents a kilogram.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US 17.6 cents a pound in the week ending 2 April 2014, 3.2 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of anhydrous milk fat declined by 11.3 per cent to US$4062 a tonne on 1 April 2014 compared with US$4578 a tonne on 18 March 2014. The skim milk powder price declined by 10 per cent, the whole milk powder price declined by 9.1 per cent and the cheese price fell by 4.4 per cent over the same period.

Climate

Notable events

  • For the second week in a row rainfall in excess of 25 millimetres was recorded across a large part of eastern Australia. Heavy falls in excess of 200 millimetres have reportedly resulted in some flash flooding in coastal regions of south-eastern Queensland. In contrast, much of the remainder of the country received little to no rainfall during the past week, apart from some isolated storm activity across the tropical north and Western Australia.

  • March rainfall was average to extremely high across most of the eastern Australian wheat sheep belt, which is likely to lead to increase soil moisture profiles in a number of regions. March rainfall was below average to average across Western Australia and South Australia. However it should be noted that these regions typically record low rainfall totals at this time of year.

  • Despite much of the Western Australian cropping zone receiving widespread rain in the past two weeks, falls in excess of 10 millimetres were mainly restricted to the far south-west of the state.

  • The rainfall forecast for the next eight days indicates there will be a broad band of rainfall from the north-east to the south-west of the country, spreading widely across south-east Western Australia and most of South Australia. Falls above 15 millimetres are forecast across a wide area, with falls above 25 millimetres forecast in south-east New South Wales and the west of central Australia.

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 2 April 2014, rainfall was mainly recorded in the eastern states. Isolated storms were also recorded around the remaining coastline and in central Western Australia. The highest recorded rainfall total for the week was 399 millimetres at Pacific Heights, near Rockhampton in Queensland. For further information go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the week ending 2 April 2014

©Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Australian Bureau of Meteorology              Issued: 02/04/2014

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$345 a tonne in the week ending 1 April 2014, compared with US$351 a tonne in the previous week.

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

  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$580 a tonne in the week ending 1 April 2014, compared with US$574 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged around US 97.1 cents a pound in the week ending 2 April 2014, largely unchanged from the previous week.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US 17.6 cents a pound in the week ending 2 April 2014, 3.2 per cent higher than in the previous week.

  • Thailand sugar industry data show the country crushed 100 million tonnes of cane in the first six months of the 2013-14 season (October to September), compared with around 94.3 million tonnes crushed over the same period a year ago. Thailand's sugar production was 10.9 million tonnes in the first six months of the 2013–14 season (October to September), around 14 per cent more than produced in the same period a year ago.

  • China Customs data shows the country’s cumulative sugar imports in the first five months of 2013-14 (October to September) were 2.1 million tonnes, almost double the 1.1 million tonnes imported in the same period in 2012-13.

  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool fell by around 3 per cent in the week ending 27 March 2014 to average 1006 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at auction was around 7 per cent lower than the previous sale.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) decreased by around 4 per cent during the week ending 2 April 2014 to $345 a tonne, compared to the price in the previous week.

  • The Australian feed barley indicator price (Sydney) fell by around 1 per cent during the week ending 2 April 2014 to $315 a tonne, compared to the price in the previous week.

  • The Australian feed wheat indicator price (General purpose, Sydney) fell by around 1 per cent during the week ending 2 April 2014 to $332 a tonne, compared to the previous week.

  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) fell slightly during the week ending 2 April 2014 to $541 a tonne, compared to the price in the previous week.

  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330–400 kg live weight C3) increased by 1.6 per cent in the week ending 28 March 2014 to 318 cents a kilogram, compared to the price in the previous week. Young cattle prices rose by around 7 per cent in New South Wales to 375 cents a kilogram and also rose in Victoria by around 4 per cent to 354 cents a kilogram, compared to the previous week.

  • Saleyard prices of lambs fell in most states in the week ending 28 March 2014, compared to prices in the previous week. The largest fall occurred in South Australia where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) fell by around 4 per cent to average 487 cents a kilogram. In other states, prices fell by around 3 per cent in Victoria to average 534 cents a kilogram and 2 per cent in New South Wales to average 557 cents a kilogram. In contrast, the indicator price rose by 3 per cent in Western Australia to average 483 cents a kilogram.

  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of anhydrous milk fat declined by 11.3 per cent to US$4062 a tonne on 1 April 2014 compared with US$4578 a tonne on 18 March 2014. The skim milk powder price declined by 10 per cent, the whole milk powder price declined by 9.1 per cent and the cheese price fell by 4.4 per cent over the same period.

  • Wholesale prices of fruit were generally lower in the week ending 29 March 2014 than in the previous week. Wholesale prices of blueberry, pineapple (smoothleaf), watermelon (seedless) and banana (cavendish) were lower than in the previous week, while strawberry prices were higher.

  • Wholesale prices of vegetables were generally lower in the week ending 29 March 2014 than in the previous week. Wholesale prices of cauliflower, broccoli, iceberg lettuce and bean (round) were lower than in the previous week, while pumpkin (grey bulk) prices were higher.

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