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Steve Blyton, wool area manager, TWG/Landmark.

Steve Blyton, wool area manager, TWG/Landmark.

Prices continued downwards in early wool sales this week; however demand increased in later sales to see most categories finish well. The EMI was quoted 2c under last weeks close on Wednesday, and then lifted 3c on Thursday to close on 1002c.

Sydney hosted the first designated superfine sale of the season this week, with support for he Best and Spinners style lots with good strength and low mid-breaks. Lower spec lots however were discounted and showed in the AWEX quotes, which saw indicators end the day down 5c to 10c generally across the fine through to broad merino fleece wool selection. Better support for the crossbreed fleece categories lifted these wools into positive territory, with most lots up around 5c. In Melbourne the better style and strength wools found support and remained little changed, while most of the market recorded falls of around 5c. Crossbreds also eased back, albeit by small amounts of between 2c and 6c. Oddments generally sold at softer to unchanged levels. Fremantle offered wool on Wednesday after a week off last week. Prices fell heavily reflecting the drops seen last week on the east coast with 18 to 19 micron categories selling around 20c cheaper, 19.5 micron lots were quoted down 26c, while the 20 to 22 micron wools were quoted down 30c to 40c.

Prices improved during Thursdays sales. Sydney saw prices for the fine wools remain mostly unchanged, while the 19 micron to 21 micron categories all lifted 10c or more.

There is a pronounced gap now however between the better style and strength wools and the low strength, high mid-break wools. Crossbreds sold well on Thursday, vas did most oddments which generally added a few cents to their values.

Melbourne sales also closed on a positive note, with small increases recorded across most of the merino fleece catalogue. While 17.5 and finer lots were soft to unchanged compared to a more stylish selection on Wednesday, the 18 through to 23 micron categories generally all picked up a few cents. Crossbreds were sought after, picking up around 10c for most categories. Most categories offered in Fremantle were able to maintain the levels set during Wednesday, however there was continued softness among 18 and 18.5 micron lots, with losses 5c to 10c. Oddments saw the most positive outcomes with prices for crutching's up to 5c to 10c , and locks up 15c to 20c.

Next week around 43000 bales are expected to be offered nationally with sale to be held over two days in Sydney, Melbourne and Fremantle.

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