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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


24 April 2014

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 24 April 2014Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 24 April 2014


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • During the past week, much of Australia recorded little to no rainfall. Rainfall was mainly restricted to the far north of Queensland and the Northern Territory, southern Victoria and across much of Tasmania.

  • The likelihood of El Niño conditions developing during 2014 remains high, with all climate models surveyed indicating El Niño is likely to occur late this year.

  • Wetter than normal conditions are forecast across much of Western Australia and the far southeast of Australia, while drier than normal conditions are more likely for parts of the Northern Tropics over the next three months (May to July 2014).

  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin have increased by 18 gigalitres this week and are at 53 per cent of total capacity.

  • There has been an increase to general security water entitlement allocations in the Murrumbidgee Valley in New South Wales.

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$336 a tonne in the week ending 22 April 2014, compared with US$331 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) was $345 a tonne in the week ending 23 April 2014, around 1 per cent lower than the previous week.

  • The Queensland young cattle indictor price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) was largely unchanged in the week ending 18 April 2014 at 327 cents a kilogram. In other states, compared with the previous week, young cattle prices rose by around 5 per cent in Victoria to 388 cents a kilogram, while falling by around 4 per cent in New South Wales to 380 cents a kilogram.

  • The saleyard prices of lamb were generally higher in the week ending 18 April 2014 relative to the previous week. The largest increase occurred in Victoria where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) rose by around 5 per cent to average 589 cents a kilogram. In other states, the indicator price rose by 2 per cent in New South Wales and by 1 per cent in South Australia to average 597 cents a kilogram and 534 cents a kilogram, respectively. By contrast, the indicator price fell by around 1 per cent in Western Australia to average 461 cents a kilogram.

Climate

Notable events

  • During the past week, much of Australia recorded little to no rainfall. Rainfall in excess of 15 millimetres was mainly restricted to the far north of Queensland and the Northern Territory, southern Victoria and across much of Tasmania.

  • While rainfall across much of Queensland and northern New South Wales in recent months has provided some relief from prolonged dry conditions, there are still large areas that require significant follow-up rainfall to alleviate long-term rainfall and soil moisture deficiencies.

  • The likelihood of El Niño conditions developing during 2014 remains high, with all climate models surveyed indicating El Niño is likely to occur late this year. Six of the seven models indicating that El Niño thresholds may be exceeded by July 2014 (Bureau of Meteorology ENSO ‘Wrap-up’, 22 April 2014).

  • Wetter than normal conditions are forecast across much of Western Australia and the far southeast of Australia, while drier than normal conditions are more likely for parts of the Northern Tropics over the next three months (May to July 2014). For the remainder of the country there is no strong indication of below or above average rainfall during this time. The temperature outlook indicates that warmer than normal day-time temperatures are more likely across the far south of the continent over the next three months, while cooler than normal day-time temperatures are more likely in central Western Australia. Warmer night-time temperatures are more likely over most of southern Australia and in the Kimberley region in Western Australia (Bureau of Meteorology 'National Seasonal Outlook', 24 April 2014).

  • The rainfall forecast for the next eight days indicates that rainfall in excess of 15 millimetres will be mainly restricted to the far south of the continent. Coastal areas of New South Wales, Queensland and the Northern Territory are also likely to receive some rainfall over the next week.

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 23 April 2014, rainfall was mainly limited to Cape York, the Top-End of the Northern Territory, southern Victoria and across Tasmania. The highest recorded rainfall total for the week was 148 millimetres at Cape Wessel, to the north of Gove in the Northern Territory.
For further information go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the week ending 23 April 2014

©Commonwealth of Australia 2014, Australian Bureau of Meteorology              Issued: 23/04/2014

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$336 a tonne in the week ending 22 April 2014, compared with US$331 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world coarse grains indicator price (US No. 2 yellow corn, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$221 a tonne for the week ending 23 April 2014, largely unchanged from the previous week.

  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$596 a tonne in the week ending 22 April 2014, compared with US$591 a tonne in the previous week.

  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US93.6 cents a pound in the week ending 23 April 2014, around 1 per cent higher than the previous week.

  • China Customs data indicates that cumulative Chinese cotton imports for the first eight months of the 2013–14 season (August-July) were around 2.2 million tonnes, around 29 per cent lower than the same period last year.

  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, No. 11 contract) averaged US17 cents a pound in the week ending 23 April 2014, around 1 per cent lower than the previous week.

  • China Customs data indicates that China imported a record of around 414 000 tonnes of raw sugar in March 2014. China’s cumulative sugar imports for the first six months of the 2013–14 season (October-September) were around 2.5 million tonnes, almost double the amount imported over the same period a year ago.

  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool rose by around 3 per cent in the week ending 16 April 2014 to average of 1048 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at auction was around 2 per cent higher than the previous sale.

  • The Australian grain sorghum indicator price (Sydney) was $345 a tonne in the week ending 23 April 2014, around 1 per cent lower than the previous week.

  • The Australian feed wheat indicator price (General purpose, Sydney) was $332 a tonne in the week ending 23 April 2014, around 1 per cent higher than the previous week.

  • The Australian barley indicator price (Sydney) was $321 a tonne in the week ending 23 April 2014, largely unchanged from the previous week.

  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) was $545 a tonne in the week ending 21 April 2014, around 4 per cent higher than the previous week.

  • The Queensland young cattle indictor price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) was largely unchanged in the week ending 18 April 2014 at 327 cents a kilogram. In other states, compared with the previous week, young cattle prices rose by around 5 per cent in Victoria to 388 cents a kilogram, while falling by around 4 per cent in New South Wales to 380 cents a kilogram.

  • The saleyard prices of lamb were generally higher in the week ending 18 April 2014 relative to the previous week. The largest increase occurred in Victoria where the indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) rose by around 5 per cent to average 589 cents a kilogram. In other states, the indicator price rose by 2 per cent in New South Wales and by 1 per cent in South Australia to average 597 cents a kilogram and 534 cents a kilogram, respectively. By contrast, the indicator price fell by around 1 per cent in Western Australia to average 461 cents a kilogram.

  • The wholesale prices of selected fruit were generally higher in the week ending 19 April 2014 compared with the previous week. The wholesale prices of blueberry, watermelon (seedless), banana (cavendish), avocado (hass) and strawberry were higher than the previous week while the price of pineapple (smoothleaf) was lower.

  • The wholesale prices of selected vegetables were generally lower in the week ending 19 April 2014 compared with the previous week. The wholesale prices of lettuce (iceberg), bean (round, stringless), broccoli and cauliflower were lower than the previous week while the price of tomato (field gourmet) was higher.

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