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Category: Weekly Softwood Lumber Blog

North America Softwood Lumber Production, Sawmill Capacity Utilization, WWPA: Jan 2020

North America Softwood Lumber Production, Sawmill Capacity Utilization, WWPA: Jan 2020

In 4Q 2019 North American softwood lumber production recovered nicely from drops over last summer, and by the end of last year made good strides in improvement, says the latest issue of the Western Wood Products Association’s monthly Lumber Track, for January 2019 – January 2020. January 2020 US lumber production volume increased by +2% compared to January 2019, to 3,221 mmfbm. After drooping for most of last year to end 2019 -15% lower than full-year 2018, softwood lumber production…

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Softwood Lumber Prices Keep Rising as Suppliers Look Toward Late Summer

Softwood Lumber Prices Keep Rising as Suppliers Look Toward Late Summer

Sawmills across North America looked toward the end of summer last week, as lumber prices continued to rise but sales volumes were unsteady. Lumber producers in the US and Canada considered this current market strength as temporary, and were already making plans for seasonal slow-downs when summer draws to a close.Softwood lumber producers consequently pushed up their asking prices and extended sawmill order files into mid- to late-June.Prices were nudged up every day as sawmills sold out of stock with…

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Softwood Lumber Prices May 2020 & Canada April and Japan March Housing Starts

Softwood Lumber Prices May 2020 & Canada April and Japan March Housing Starts

The USA purchases approximately 65% of Canadian lumber production, while Canadian buyers account for about 10%, and those in Japan take 6%.However: US and Canadian customers purchase mostly standard grades (#2&Btr), while Japan buys almost exclusively premium or “appearance” grades (J-grade) which sells for quite a bit more than standard grade does.It’s true that North American softwood lumber purchasing by China has increased massively since 20 years ago, but it is important to note that a lot of this wood…

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May Long Weekend in Canada Does Nothing to Slow Lumber Demand

May Long Weekend in Canada Does Nothing to Slow Lumber Demand

A lot of regular life activities remain unknown as various jurisdictions “open up” from the Covid19 isolation and quarantine. Regardless, most North American construction framing dimension softwood lumber prices jumped once again last week on both continued healthy demand and uncertainty with supply.Producers of Western Spruce-Pine-Fir commodities in the United States said bread and butter items again sold with aplomb, although all stock was moving briskly. Buyers came in volleys to shore up their depleted inventories; making peace with the…

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Softwood Lumber Prices May 2020 & US Housing Starts: April 2020

Softwood Lumber Prices May 2020 & US Housing Starts: April 2020

Residential housing starts in the US slumped -30% from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 891,000, the lowest level since 2015, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Data for March was revised up to show homebuilding declining to a pace of 1.276 million units instead of dropping to 1.216 million units as previously reported. Single-family housing starts dropped -25% to a rate of 665,000, also a five-year low.US building permits fell -21% from March to a seasonally…

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North America Softwood Lumber Production, Sawmill Capacity Utilization, WWPA: February 2020

North America Softwood Lumber Production, Sawmill Capacity Utilization, WWPA: February 2020

The latest issue of the Western Wood Products Association’s monthly Lumber Track, for February 2019 – February 2020, shows US lumber production volumes continued previous improvement, this time up by +4.2% over the previous year, to 6,108 mmfbm.February 2019 – February 2020 Canada softwood lumber production has not yet been released by Statistics Canada, but Madison’s would expect it to show similar upward trajectory. USA Softwood Lumber Production: Feb 2020 USA Sawmill Capacity Utilization Rates: Feb 2020 Sawmill production as…

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Softwood Lumber Prices Bounce Higher Than in May 2019

Softwood Lumber Prices Bounce Higher Than in May 2019

Suppliers of Western SPF commodities in the United States were cautiously optimistic to start the month of May. Both primary and secondary suppliers reported a positive tone to the market. Producers extended the bulk of their sawmill order files into late-May. Sales activity of most commodities was solid, with 2×6 #2&Btr R/L the only item lagging behind slightly in demand early in the week.Rebounding completely from the lows of April, for the week ending May 8, 2020, Western SPF 2×4…

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Canada and US Railcar Loadings: to May 2, 2020

Canada and US Railcar Loadings: to May 2, 2020

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) on May 6 reported total US weekly rail traffic for the week ending May 2, 2020 was 416,954 carloads and intermodal units, down -22% compared with the same week last year. Total carloads for that week were 189,190 carloads, down -29% compared with the same week in 2019, while US weekly intermodal volume was 227,764 containers and trailers, down -15% compared to 2019. North American rail volume for the week ending May 2, 2020,…

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Madison’s Western S-P-F Lumber Prices May 8: sneak preview

Madison’s Western S-P-F Lumber Prices May 8: sneak preview

The full Madison’s Lumber Reporter North America softwood lumber price list will be updated as usual first thing Friday morning Eastern time, however here is a SNEAK PEAK at tomorrow’s benchmark Western Spruce-Pine-Fir (WSPF) prices: After some recovery from steep drops in April last week,The wholesaler price of benchmark softwood lumber item Western Spruce-Pine-Fir KD 2×4 #2&Btr for May 8 shot up +$18 on restricted supply, to US$354 mfbm (net FOB sawmill), from US$336 mfbm last week. The latest weekly…

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