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Australian Weekly ABARES Report


04 April 2013

Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 4 April 2013Australian Weekly ABARES Report - 4 April 2013


The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences

Summary of key issues

  • Heavy rainfall associated with a monsoon trough in the Northern Territory Top End is expected to improve pasture growth in the lead-up to winter.
  • Recent above average rainfall has led to favourable upper soil moisture levels for planting winter cereals in Queensland cropping areas.
  • March rainfall was average to above average in south-west Western Australia, north of the Northern Territory and Cape York, and across parts of central Australia.
  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) increased this week by 57 gigalitres (GL) compared to last week, and are at 66 per cent of total capacity.
  • Irrigation water use from the Murray Darling Basin was reported to be at record levels this season compared to previous years.
  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$622 a tonne in the week ending 2 April 2013, remaining largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of skim milk powder increased to US$5142 a tonne on 2 April 2013, compared with US$4050 a tonne on 19 March 2013.
  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) fell by 3 per cent in the week ending 29 March 2013 to 319 cents a kilogram.
  • Australian beef and veal exports in March 2013 were 88 000 tonnes (shipped weight), 5 per cent higher than the same time last year.

Climate

Notable events

  • Heavy rainfall associated with a monsoon trough in the Northern Territory Top End is expected to improve pasture growth in the lead-up to winter after a drier than normal Wet Season, but wet conditions have been reported to delay mustering operations in some areas.
  • Recent above average rainfall has led to favourable upper soil moisture levels for planting winter cereals in Queensland cropping areas.
  • Irrigation water use from the Murray Darling Basin was reported to be at record levels this season compared to previous years, and may be attributed to relatively low upper soil moisture levels across most of south east Australia in the lead-up to the winter cropping season.
  • March rainfall was average to above average in south-west Western Australia, north of the Northern Territory and Cape York, and across parts of central Australia. Rainfall was below average to well below average in western Victoria, north west Western Australia, north west Queensland and parts of the Northern Territory.
  • The string of warm months over summer continued during March, with above average day-time and night-time temperatures recorded for most of the continent. Both day- and night-time temperatures were below average in south-west Western Australia and up to four degrees above average in parts of the Northern Territory.
  • There is limited rainfall forecast across most of Australia next week, with a possibility of additional isolated late monsoonal rainfall in parts of the Tropics.

Rainfall this week

For the week ending 3 April 2013, light to moderate falls were mainly recorded in all states and territories. A monsoon trough produced heavy falls in the tropics, particularly in the north of the Northern Territory towards the end of the week. The highest rainfall total for the week was 561 millimetres at Maningrida in central Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. For further information, go to www.bom.gov.au/climate/current/weeklyrain.shtml.

Rainfall for the week ending 3 April 2013


©Commonwealth of Australia 2013, Australia Bureau of Meteorology
Issued: 3/04/2013

Commodities

Production and commodities

  • The world wheat indicator price (US No. 2 hard red winter, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$318 a tonne in the week ending 2 April 2013, compared with US$330 a tonne in the previous week.
  • The world coarse grains indicator price (US no. 2 yellow corn, free on board Gulf ports) averaged US$282 a tonne for the week ending 3 April 2013, compared with US$313 a tonne in the previous week.
  • According to the United States Department of Agriculture’s report Prospective Planting, released on 28 March 2013, US corn producers intend to plant 39.4 million hectares of corn in 2013–14, marginally higher than 2012–13 and the highest since 1936.
  • The world canola indicator price (Rapeseed, Europe, free on board Hamburg) averaged US$622 a tonne in the week ending 2 April 2013, remaining largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • The Australian canola indicator price (Portland, Victoria) averaged $560 a tonne in the week ending 3 April 2013, compared with $573 a tonne in the previous week.
  • The world cotton indicator price (the Cotlook ‘A’ index) averaged US 94.8 cents a pound in the week ending 3 April 2013, remaining largely unchanged from the previous week.
  • The world sugar indicator price (Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no. 11 contract) averaged US17.6 cents a pound in the week ending 3 April 2013, 2 per cent lower than in the previous week.
  • The Global Dairy Trade (GDT) weighted average price of skim milk powder increased to US$5142 a tonne on 2 April 2013, compared with US$4050 a tonne on 19 March 2013. This represented an increase of 27 per cent in the price of skim milk powder over this period. Anhydrous milk fat and cheese prices rose by 6 per cent and 7 per cent, respectively. The whole milk powder price remained largely unchanged at US$5110 a tonne.
  • The changes to wholesale prices of fruit were generally lower in the week ending 30 March 2013. Wholesale prices of strawberry, pineapple (smoothleaf), watermelon (seedless), blueberry and banana (cavendish) were lower than the previous week.
  • The changes to wholesale prices of vegetables were generally higher in the week ending 30 March 2013. Wholesale prices of iceberg lettuce, cauliflower, bean (round) and broccoli were higher, while tomatoes (field gourmet) were lower than the previous week.
  • The Queensland young cattle indicator price (330 – 400 kg live weight C3) fell by 3 per cent in the week ending 29 March 2013 to 319 cents a kilogram. Compared to the previous week, young cattle prices in New South Wales and Victoria fell by 7 per cent and 1 per cent to 336 cents and 354 cents a kilogram, respectively.
  • Australian beef and veal exports in March 2013 were 88 000 tonnes (shipped weight), 5 per cent higher than the same time last year. Increased exports to China and the Middle East offset a decline in shipments to Japan and the United States, compared to March 2012.
  • Saleyard lamb prices rose in the week ending 29 March 2013. The largest rise occurred in Western Australia where the lamb indicator price (18–22kg fat score 2–4) increased by 6 per cent to average 345 cents a kilogram.
  • The Australian Eastern Market Indicator price for wool fell by 2 per cent in the week ending 27 March 2013 to 1059 cents a kilogram clean. The total number of bales offered at sale declined by 4 per cent, compared with previous week.

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