Production of softwood lumber in the US increased by 4.9 per cent for the first nine months of 2014 compared to last year, to 23,718 million board feet, said the Western Wood Products Association Lumber Track Friday.
Softwood lumber shipments across America also increased, by 5.1 per cent, to 23,772 million board feet from January to September compared to the same time in 2013.
US inventories, meanwhile, dropped by 0.6 per cent in September compared to the same month in 2013, from 2,939 million board feet last year to 2,922 million board feet.
North America Lumber Production, Capacity
In Canada, softwood lumber production remained almost level for the first nine months of 2014, at 18,581 million board feet, compared to last year said the WWPA. Inventories at Canadian mills, meanwhile, increased by 7.9 per cent from January to September compared to the same time last year, to 2,726 million board feet from 2,526 million board feet. This increase was driven mostly by producers in the British Columbia region.
Capacity at American sawmills improved to 84 per cent for the first nine months of this year compared to the same time in 2013 when it was 80 per cent. In Canada, sawmill capacity remained level at 79 per cent from January to September 2014 compared to last year.