The Australian Bureau of Meteorology says there is now a greater than 70% chance El Niño will develop during the southern hemisphere winter.
In its latest update, the bureau explains, "Although the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is currently neutral, surface and subsurface ocean temperatures have warmed considerably in recent weeks, consistent with a state of rapid transition. International climate models surveyed by the Bureau indicate continued warming of the central Pacific Ocean in coming months. Most models predict ocean temperatures will reach El Niño thresholds during the coming winter season."
El Niño is typically associated with below-normal rain across large areas of southern and inland eastern Australia the second half of the year. The bureau also notes that the strength of an El Niño does not necessarily indicate how much of an influence it will have on Aussie rainfall.
The seasonal warming of sea surface temps along the equator known as El Niño typically leads to slightly cooler and wetter than average summers in the U.S., which is generally favorable for yields.
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology also says, "The Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is currently in a neutral state. Model outlooks indicate the IOD will remain neutral through late autumn and early winter. The chance of a positive IOD event occurring will increase if an El Niño develops."