[10 November/Otago Daily Times]

The drop in New Zealand dollar during October was not enough to offset the decline in commodity prices resulting in a fifth consecutive monthly fall in the ANZ world commodity price index.  The 2.4% decrease in October was identical to September’s result. The annual growth rate in prices is down 5.6% against a year ago reflecting weaker prices for most commodities. Month on month, dairy prices fell 3.1%, meat and fibre declined 2%, horticulture shed 4.3% and forestry lost 1.5%,  although the latter two were both up on a year ago, by  4.5% and 6.1% respectively. Trade disruption had dented confidence in New Zealand’s main export markets, with the impact on China of particular concern.  ANZ noted that the CPTPP will take effect in 2019 and will be welcomed by exporters as it will level some key playing fields for New Zealand companies, particularly with Australia for beef exports to Japan. Monthly dairy prices fell 3.1%, or 12.3% on last year, and were now at their lowest level since September 2016. Casein was the only dairy category to lift in price.