North America Forest Products Movement Update: August 2017

North America Forest Products Movement Update: August 2017

The latest data, some released just Wednesday by Statistics Canada, show a glowing picture of improving conditions for North America’s forest products industry. Most of the data encompasses January to August 2017, providing solid information on the economic state of Canadian and US log and lumber products and their movement so far this year.

Headline may as well read: “US Log Exports to China Skyrocket, But Let’s Blame Canada”

Most striking is the sharp increase in US coniferous log exports to China, up +15.7 per cent for the first eight months of this year compared to 2016, when considered against a double-digit jump in US sawn wood import values from China, up a remarkable +12.9 per cent for January to August compared to last year.
US log exports to the other major partners are down, to Canada down by -9.2 per cent.
Also fascinating, US sawn wood exports to China — also used to make pallets, crating, and furniture components — is up by an astonishing +15.7 per cent for the first eight months of 2017 compared to last year.
US lumber exports to it’s other major partners are down as well; to Canada down by -3 per cent.

Canada and US Log and Lumber Update: August 2017

Headline may as well read: “US Log Exports to China Skyrocket, But Let’s Blame Canada”

According to the latest figures from the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agriculture Service, for January to August 2017 the USA imported US$4,158 billion of softwood lumber from the World, which amounts to a +3.1 per cent increase from the first eight months of the previous year, when it was US$4,028 billion.
US softwood lumber imports from China vaulted almost +13 per cent, to US$34 million.
For January to August 2017, the vast majority of US imported lumber came from Canada as usual, which is essentially flat for the first eight months of this year, to US$3,638 million from US$3,660 million in January to August 2016.
US Coniferous Sawn Wood Imports: August 2017

SOURCE: US Census

Canada Coniferous Sawn Wood Exports: August 2017

Looked at another way, the latest Statistics Canada data shows that Canada exported C$6,809 million of softwood lumber to the World in January to August 2017, which amounts to a +4.5 per cent increase over the same time last year when it was C$6,501 million.
Exports of Canadian softwood lumber to the USA for the first eight months of this year were up +2.1 per cent, to C$5,022 million from C$2,949 million for January to Jan 2016.

SOURCE: Statistics Canada

 

US Log Exports: August 2017

Even as US housing starts figures continue to improve more quickly than most expected as of yet, US log exports to the World for January to August 2017 skyrocket +9 per cent to US$915 million. Those to China, however, increase an astonishing +15.7 per cent.

Meanwhile Canadians are being accused of hindering US sawmill owners from consuming logs at their own softwood lumber production facilities.

Otherwise, US log exports to all other jurisdictions, including Canada, dropped significantly for January to August 2017.

SOURCE: US Census

 

Canada Softwood Lumber Production, Sawmill Manufacturing Sales: August 2017

Sales increased slightly, by +3.9 per cent, while production was again essentially flat compared to the previous year.
(blue bars are total Canada softwood lumber production, red line is BC, AB, QC combined sawmill manufacturing sales)

SOURCE: Statistics Canada, Industry Canada

US Lumber & Construction Materials Wholesale Trade: August 2017

As justification for the statement that US housing construction is doing well, US Lumber & Construction Material Wholesale Trade in the first eight months of 2017 improved +7.4 per cent, to US$90,748 million from US$84,023 million the previous year.

SOURCE: US Bureau of Labor Statistics
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