Commodity prices dip 0.5% in July in sixth monthly decline
BUSINESSDESK: New Zealand commodity prices fell for the sixth straight month in July, as uncertainty over the global economy and Europe’s worsening debt crisis sapped demand for raw materials.
The ANZ Commodity Price Index fell 0.5% last month. Wool dropped 7%, bringing its decline over the past 12 months to 43%, prices for skins dropped 4% and beef and lamb fell 2%.
Dairy products, the nation’s biggest export commodity, mitigated the decline, rising almost 1% in July. That was led by a 3% increase in whole milk powder, while butter fell 4% and skim milk powder was down 1%. Prices were unchanged for cheese and casein.
Dairy prices have tumbled 26%in the past 12 months.
The ANZ survey comes after the results of the latest GlobalDairyTrade sale of dairy products showed a 3.5% lift in prices, only the fourth sale where prices have gained this year.
Among other commodities, aluminium, pulp, kiwifruit and log prices declined 1%. Prices of seafood and venison were unchanged, while sawn timber rose 1% and apples were up 2%.
The NZD commodity price index fell 3.1% in July, reflecting a 2.2% rise in the trade weighted index, and has declined 15.3% in the past 12 months.