One More Week Before Traditional Forestry Holiday Break

But expect the lumber business to come back with a bang right at the beginning of 2018, just as it was in January this year.

The US International Trade Commission December 7 released a pre-announcement of it’s looming Final Determination on Canadian imports of manufactured softwood lumber products to the USA.

This timing means that these duties will take effect right at the beginning of 2017. Some small adjustments were made in individual company duty rates.

Current Softwood Lumber Prices Compared to Historical Highs

SOURCE: Madison’s Lumber Reporter

The below table is a comparison of December 2015, 2016, and December 2017 prices for benchmark Western Spruce-Pine-Fir 2x4s and Southern Yellow Pine 2x4s on the East side:

The graph below illustrates peak-and-valley year fluctuations for WSPF KD 2×4 #2&Btr prices.

SOURCE: Madison’s Lumber Reporter

US Thanksgiving Usually Year-End Slow Time For Lumber Selling

A significant correction on benchmark WSPF dimension prices this week moderated the wild ride construction framing softwood lumber prices have taken since the beginning of 2017. In the east, ESPF 2×6 also had a big adjustment this week.

Expectations are that most wood commodity prices will remain generally level to those this week until more volatility hits right at the beginning of next year.

Anecdotal comments from suppliers indicate the duties have already been absorbed into prices and last week’s announcement has had no impact on levels.

Scuttlebutt is forming about #3 / Utility and #4 / Economy grade 2×4 and 2×6 throughout the marketplace. This lower-grade item is often sold as cut-stock into remanufacturing for pallets and crating (as well as furniture and otherwise). It seems US grocery suppliers and other pallet producers are facing critical shortage in this cut-stock as the majority of manufacturers have been up-grading their #3 and #4 materials to sell into the screaming-hot standard construction framing market.

Madison’s will provide a historical price comparison, as above, for #3 / Utility and #4 / Economy grade 2×4 and 2×6 next week.