Prior to the First World War, the selling of the Australian wool clip rested firmly in the hands of the large woolbroking firms. An agreement between the British and Australian governments during the war saw many of the wool-selling functions of broking firms taken over by the Central Wool Committee. At the conclusion of hostilities, brokers moved to regain their role in the market. However, market conditions had changed. On an international level, traditional trading relationships had broken down, leaving commodity markets unstable and prices unpredictable. On a local level, woolgrowers had benefited from the wartime orderly marketing scheme and the high price guaranteed by the British government for their wool clip. As a result, they had begun to demand a greater role in the selling arrangements of their clip. This paper investigates the debates over the sale of the wool clip in the 1920s and how woolbrokers and growers eventually arrived at an understanding as to the manner in which the market should operate.
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