Impact of rain a mixed bag
There was a better start to last week with much-needed rain falling over parts of Victoria and NSW.
Just how much influence this rain will have on farmers, restockers, and grain producers is a mixed bag, judging by the comments around the markets.
Producers have had an increased presence in physical markets, which is underpinning prices of well-bred young secondary lambs.
Restockers are using some caution, however, with prices fluctuating at all markets.
Restocker confidence at Wagga Wagga, NSW, dropped a few gears and as a consequence the better bred light weight lambs sold to cheaper trends of $5 making from $78-$121, with the very light weight portion averaging $87.80.
Secondary lambs with weight and frame sold to fewer restockers selling at $120-$145.20.
Trade lambs were cheaper as the market dipped for the first time in many weeks.
The best trade lambs still broke the $170 barrier but most sales were under this mark.
All pens of well-finished fresh lambs averaged 639c/kg.
Buyers limited by price generally paid from $138-$161, a cheaper trend of $3-$8.
There was not a big change in price for heavy lambs, with rates similar to last week due to the limited supplies.
Heavier pens sold from $169-$192.
Rates jumped in the mutton run.
Heavy mutton sold $10 dearer making from $113-$156.
Light and medium grades gained $2-$3 averaging 395-426c/kg cwt.
Lamb values are being pressured by increased supplies at markets of plainer lambs, with Bendigo and Corowa generally a few dollars cheaper for trade and heavy export new season lambs.
The National Livestock Reporting Service noted that at most markets lambs were mixed in quality, with a fair percentage starting to show dryness.
The general trend for young trade lambs at Bendigo was $1-$5 cheaper and sold from $124-$166 to average 625c/kg cwt.
The supply of heavy lambs was limited and they made from $168-$176 averaging 600c/kg cwt.
There were fewer store orders in place, however, the NLRS said any big lines of young, well-bred lambs continued to sell strongly from $108-$122.
Lambs with weight and frame sold at $120-$136.
Ballarat lamb market showed a big increase in supplies.
Quality was very good and competition was solid. While young extra heavy lambs did reach $198, most trade weight drafts made from $125-$162 to average 622c/kg cwt.
Secondary lambs to turnout had better competition and made from $84-$140.
Generally trade mutton was unchanged to dearer in places averaging 408-487c/kg cwt.
Heavy Merino ewes sold $3 easier.