NZ commodity prices rise 2.8 per cent in February
New Zealand commodity prices rose in February as supply issues bolstered prices for dairy products as well as a lift in meat and fibre prices.
The ANZ commodity price index gained 2.8 per cent in February to 296.4 and was up 5 per cent on the year.
In New Zealand dollar terms the index lifted 2.4 per cent on the month to 215.5 as the New Zealand dollar was broadly steady against major trading partners in the month.
It was the first lift in New Zealand dollar prices since November. The index was up 6.4 per cent on year in New Zealand dollar terms.
Dairy prices jumped 6 per cent on the month in February, driven by concerns about a potential early finish to the New Zealand season and cooler weather in Europe, said ANZ Bank New Zealand rural economist Con Williams.
Gains were broad-based and led by skim milk powder, which lifted 9.4 per cent on the month.
Meat and fibre increased 1.6 per cent month-on-month, lifted by wool and beef prices.
“Beef markets continued to perform well with tight Australasian supply and inter-market competition between the US and China,” said Williams. Beef prices rose 3.9 per cent on the month.
Wool prices lifted 7.4 per cent on the month, seafood prices were unchanged and horticultural products are in hibernation for the off-season, and were also unchanged.
Forestry eked out another small gain, lifting 0.1 per cent on the month. The increase was led by a 1 per cent in wood pulp prices.
Aluminium prices fell 1.6 per cent on the month, after lifting 6.2 per cent in January.
“The big focus going forward will most likely be the possible impact of recently announced US import tariffs. In time, this could weigh on the world aluminium price,” he said.