North America Lumber Market Update: 3Q 2017

North America Lumber Market Update: 3Q 2017

As negotiations toward a Canada-US softwood lumber agreement furiously go on, different perspectives and data sets speak to the situation with Canadian softwood lumber exports into USA. Since the beginning of September there have been hearings in Washington, DC, for various sides — mostly US domestic interests — to table comments and submit on the topic of injury. Between now and the end of the year, Canada will have a chance to table some of its evidence. A lot of…

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US New Home Sales: August 2017

US New Home Sales: August 2017

Contracts for new single-family home sales in the US declined 3.4 per cent in August to a 560,000 seasonally adjusted annual rate, according to estimates from the joint data release of HUD and the Census Bureau Tuesday. This was the second month of decline for the pace of new home sales and the weakest rate since December of last year. The three-month moving average of new home sales also weakened to 585,000, the lowest since January of this year. US…

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BCFii Year-in-Review: 2016/17

BCFii Year-in-Review: 2016/17

This week British Columbia Forestry Innovation Investment released it’s 2016/17 Year in Review report. British Columbia Forestry Innovation Investment is a BC Crown agency with a mandate that includes developing and diversifying markets for BC forest products around the world as well as promoting forest practices and the environmental merits of wood products. According to the agency’s year-in-review report released this week, over the past year, BC FII and its partners in industry and government have continued to support the…

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Japan Housing Starts: July 2017

Japan Housing Starts: July 2017

According to a report released by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism on August 31st, Japan’s housing starts in July were 83,234 units, a drop of 2.3 per cent from the same month in the previous year, said Japan Lumber Journal September 15. When compared to the previous months, that figure decreased by 4.8 per cent and the seasonally-adjusted annual rate was 974,000 units, down 3 per cent from the previous month, falling below the 1,000,000 units for…

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Japan Wood Imports from North America: 1H 2017

Japan Wood Imports from North America: 1H 2017

Japan imports of North American logs for the first half of 2017 dropped 8.5 per cent compared to the same time the previous year, to 1.37 million cubic metres, while that of lumber increased 2.4 per cent, to 1.1 million cubic metres, said Japan Lumber Reports August 25. The decrease in log imports is due to high volumes of consumption in 2016, and the rise in lumber imports is a result of smaller volumes last year. Compared to 2015, Japan’s…

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Heffler Forest Products Reopens

Heffler Forest Products Reopens

Jobs are coming back to Hefler Forest Products’ sawmill in Middle Sackville, NS, starting next month, said Stan Mason, president of the forest products company to The Hants Journal September 15. The company will be producing specialty wood products, including 12-foot and 16-foot lengths and deck boards. The new hires next month will amount to 25 sawmill jobs, almost tripling the company’s workforce which now includes 15 employees at its biomass plant, to a total of 40 people. Under its…

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Renting in USA: New Reality

Renting in USA: New Reality

A total of 43 million Americans were renters in 2016, and of that number 47.7 per cent were cost-burdened, meaning these consumers spend more than 30 per cent of their income on housing, a threshold long used by the federal government to identify “rent-burdened” households, according to the US Census Bureau’s 2015 American Community Survey. Nearly half of renter households (48 per cent) in the US were rent-burdened in 2015. THE DEMOGRAPHICS OF COST-BURDENED RENTERS: 2017 A total of 43…

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Western Forest Products and Long Hoh Lay Off Workers

Western Forest Products and Long Hoh Lay Off Workers

The Public and Private Workers of Canada and Unifor say 160 sawmill workers are being laid off, according to My Comox Valley Now Thursday. The layoffs are happening at the Ladysmith, BC, Western Forest Products sawmill and at Long Hoh Enterprises at Qualicum Beach, BC, both on Vancouver Island. Forestry Officer Cam Shiell says that’s because the sawmills are facing log and fibre shortages due to hot, dry weather and poor government policies. Shiell says more layoffs are expected and…

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British Columbia New Government Budget Revealed: Forestry

British Columbia New Government Budget Revealed: Forestry

The newly-elected BC provincial government earlier this year has released it’s budget plan, for the general economy and for the forests ministry. There are some changes in the dollars for the 2017/18 estimate from the previous year. Madison’s caught up with the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Thursday to get details on the new accounting. British Columbia New Forest Service Plan and Budget Estimate: 2017 / 18 The only major change to the new…

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Softwood Lumber, Storms, and NAFTA

Softwood Lumber, Storms, and NAFTA

News out late in the afternoon Thursday suggests that some Canadian negotiators are considering trying to add softwood lumber in the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA. According to Global News, Canada’s ambassador to the US, David MacNaughton, expressed frustration at the US industry using what is effectively its veto power to block any deal between the national governments and he raised the possibility of working around it to achieve a long-term solution. As for demand for wood needed…

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