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Yarn Market
Clarence D. Rogers, Ph.D., Technical Editor

Yarn Prices Are Up, The Light Is Very Bright

Clarence D. Rogers, Ph.D., Technical Editor

O ur business is excellent — the best that it has been in a long, long time,” said a spinner. “ However, we are a little uncertain about some of our customers and their outlook for the next quarter. They seem to think that their business will be good for the next few months, but we don’t have any concrete evidence to support that. A few weeks ago, we thought that much of the business was to fill the pipeline, but that doesn’t appear to be the case.” He went on to say, “I think that we have gained a lot of new business.

Much of this is a result of firms going out of business. Some comes from other manufacturers cutting back on spinning capacity, and now they don’t have enough to support weaving or knitting. We are also creating new products and working very hard to gain market share.”

Another spinner said, “Our customers are very excited. It’s darned amazing, things are going so good. We usually expect a little downturn after July 4th, but the 4th came and went without a ripple. Most mills remained open during the week of the 4th. Business remained strong, and things have been going great since then. Maybe we have made the turn. We're keeping our fingers crossed.”

When asked about problems that might be on the horizon, he responded, “Our biggest unknown is China. If retail ever gets comfortable with China, that could be real scary. Or, put another way, very powerful for them. We're not sure about China.”

The light is very bright, but off in the distance is the competition that none of us can be sure about.

Knitters' Comments
Yarn prices are going up — this was the feedback from everyone contacted who purchases yarn. One knitter said, “My prices have been going up for the past four months. For example, in March 2002, I paid $1.00 per pound for 28/1 100-percent cotton open-end (OE) yarn. The latter part of June 2002, I paid $1.16 per pound for this yarn — a 16-percent increase.”

A second knitter said, “In May, I paid 78 cents per pound for 18/1 100-percent cotton OE yarn. In July, I paid 95 cents per pound. I can tell you for certain that things are changing — prices are going up.”

Raw Material Prices Are Up
Quotation for the base quality of cotton in the seven designated markets averaged 40.04 cents per pound. This weekly average was up 19 percent from the 33.64 cents per pound reported last month, and down from the 42.19 cents reported for the corresponding week one year ago.

Polyester prices also moved up in the range of 55 to 58 cents per pound. This is up in general from the 55 cents reported last month, and down from the 60 cents reported for the corresponding week last year.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports that mill interest in the 2002 cotton crop was light to moderate. Mills are still buying small volumes of the 2001 crop. Request was for high white grades with long staple, premium micronaire and higher strength.

Seems like we are beginning to look for fiber properties that we dreamed of several years ago — long as a rope, strong as steel, fine as silk and cheap as ….

Method For Getting Prices
During the past few weeks, Yarn Market has received a few calls about yarn prices reported and how they are determined. Here is the method for collecting and reporting prices:

Each month, yarn spinners are contacted and asked for the prices of their yarns that are represented in the Yarn Market report. The only question asked is the price of their specific yarns. These data are collected and averages are calculated.

The averages are the numbers reported. You have heard the saying, “What you see is what you get.” That is the case here. The numbers reported depend totally on the information received.

Prices reported, such as those on the facing page, have been discussed with several readers of the Yarn Market. In general, they said they look at these prices in the same way they look at sticker prices on an automobile.

The dollar amount reflects the asking price. However, actual selling price depends on the purchasing power of the companies involved. Many agree the trend of these data is significant. Maybe we should look at these data as sticker prices for sales-yarn spinners.

August 2002

Related Files:
Download Current Yarn Prices.




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