August 7, 2018 / 9:53 PM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Global dairy prices unchanged after four consecutive falls

    * Global dairy prices flat at auction
    * Result comes after four consecutive price drops
    * North Asian buyers hold off, but strong showing from other
markets - analyst

 (Recasts, adds analyst comment, market reaction)
    By Charlotte Greenfield
    WELLINGTON, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Global dairy prices were flat
at a fortnightly auction held early on Wednesday after four
consecutive falls.
    The GDT Price Index was unchanged, with an average selling
price of $3,136 per tonne, having fallen 1.7 percent at the
previous sale, according to GDT Events.
    The amount of product sold, however, jumped 33.9 percent
compared with the previous auction to a total of 34,076 tonnes. 
    Nevertheless buyers from North Asia, including heavyweight
China, held back.
    "There were fewer buyers from North Asia at this event than
at the (previous) event, but the presence of buyers from South
East Asia and Oceania, and from South America was strong," said
Amy Castleton, dairy analyst at Agri HQ. 
    Whole milk powder, the most widely traded product, rose just
0.1 percent compared with derivatives markets expectations of a
0.8 percent gain. 
    Butter fell 3.2 percent, but cheddar and anhydrous milk fat
eked out 1.3 percent and 1.2 percent gains respectively.
    Prices have been falling in recent months as production in
the world's biggest dairy exporter, New Zealand, started to pick
up after weather-related woes earlier in the year, suggesting
stronger overall global supply.
    The auction results can affect the New Zealand dollar       
as the dairy sector generates more than 7 percent of the
nation's gross domestic product.
    The kiwi currency dropped from around $0.6750 to $0.6734 in
the wake of the auction.
    GDT Events is owned by New Zealand’s Fonterra Co-operative
Group Ltd         , but operates independently from the dairy
    U.S.-listed CRA International Inc          is the trading
manager for the Global Dairy Trade auction.
    A number of companies, including Dairy America and Murray
Goulburn         , use the platform to sell milk powder and
other dairy products.
    The next auction is scheduled for Aug. 21.

 (Reporting by Charlotte Greenfield and Bengaluru Commodities
Editing by James Dalgleish)
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