Stick Trade Blog

Lumber Prices for Hardwoods and Sof...

Posted August 10th, 2011

Future lumber prices for Jan 2012 were down 4% today (CME 8/10/11) and listed at $245.90. In looking the lumber news from 2010 & many experts were predicting 2012 to be the breakout year for lumber supply and demand. So what will 2012 bring? The data now appears to say that 2012 will not be a breakout year for hardwood lumber or softwood lumber demand. So what do the Ti Leaves say? The biggest leaf on the tree is housing starts and these are still and will will probably remain low for 2012. The annualized figure for June 2011 is 624,000 and 2012 we be maybe slightly higher. So what is a healthy housing start number for the lumber industry? Well, from 1995 through 2005 the average figure was about 1.66 million annual housing starts and to get back to semi-normal this figure should be a above 1 million. While hardwood lumber including red oak and white oak, maple, hickory and cherry are more resistant to fluctuations in housing starts than softwood lumber, new housing still stimulates demand for hardwoods via cabinets, flooring and other millwork products. The factors limiting housing starts continue to hinder the economy. These include a high unemployment, high foreclosures and low consumer confidence. According to RealtyTrac foreclosures were 222,747 for June 2011 and this number is still high. Unemployment is another thorn in the side of the housing market. Generally, it is good to have a job to buy a house and, even if a person has a job, the consumer needs the confidence that that job will last. Yesterday (8/9), a very wise man on economic matters, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, announced he would keep interest rates at the lowest possible level until mid-2013. In plain English the guy is saying he expects things to be bad for awhile. The decline in housing starts has led to a decline in lumber production. U.S. lumber production has declined from 51 billion board feet in 2005 to 29 billion board feet in 2010. The 2011 figure may should be similar to 2010. So where is the sunshine in this storm? As we have said before, it is in global markets. The value of lumber exports through May 2011 are up 30 percent over the same period of 2010. The leading export markets in order are China, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Italy, and Vietnam. Mills and dealers that are exporting are thriving from a weak US Dollar, which makes U.S. lumber cheaper abroad. The sawmill and forest products industry is now in a totally different dimension than it was 10 years ago. Exporting should no longer be considered a choice, but an essential business strategy. If a mill or lumber related company does not want to export directly that is fine. But find a company to partner up with that has expertise in global markets. A good place to start is by joining the Softwood Export Council or the American Hardwood Export Council. These entities can help sawmills and lumber traders started with exporting. Remember, above every cloud is a sunny day.

<< Back to Stick Trade

News and Analysis from Sticktrade.com

  • Lumber Prices & Starts

    Lumber prices remain low. Lumber supply is coming online from mills and the CME July futures are showing at $282.20 per thousand (as of June 18, 2013). The hardwood softwood market for 2013 is almost at the half way point. So why are prices still low? Housing starts are inching up and approaching the magic [...]

  • Hardwood Lumber & Softwood Lumber

    Lumber: Hardwood lumber and softwood wholesale lumber supply appear to be firming up. Lumber prices as listed by the CME futures are close to $273 for November. Housing start numbers for August were a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 750,000 units, which was about 29% above the July 2011 rate of 581,000. The demand for [...]

  • Lumber

    Lumber prices are slightly up. Sawmills with timber supply of species such as SY pine lumber, hemlock, and Douglas fir may find that markets are improving. Hardwoods and reclaimed lumber also appear firm as the suppliers search to fill green building demand. On May 21, 2012, lumber price futures for July were listed at $287.90, [...]

  • Lumber Prices

    Lumber prices for Hardwood lumber and softwood lumber continue to fluctuate. Wholesale hardwood lumber suppliers for red oak, white oak, walnut, cypress, cherry, maple and others still face uncertainty. Lumber price futures are up as the housing market continues to improve. As of 12/23/11, they were at 243.50, which was an improvement of 2.5 points [...]

  • Wholesale hardwood lumber price and log price to China

    Hardwood lumber prices and log prices including oak, cherry, walnut, and maple are tied to the global markets. Sawmills and other suppliers of wholesale lumber of hardwood and softwood have been wondering where are lumber & log prices going? Timber traders and sawmills now find China as a major market. During the first half of [...]

  • Lumber Prices for Hardwoods and Softwoods Approaching 2012

    Future lumber prices for Jan 2012 were down 4% today (CME 8/10/11) and listed at $245.90. In looking the lumber news from 2010 & many experts were predicting 2012 to be the breakout year for lumber supply and demand. So what will 2012 bring? The data now appears to say that 2012 will not be [...]

  • Wholesale Lumber Prices Stagnant Exports up

    Lumber prices are stagnant, while exports continue to be strong. As of the first part of 2011 through April, U.S. lumber exports are up 44% and expected to surpass a total value of $3 billion for the year. China continues to roar and 2011 lumber exports to China will be about double what they were [...]

  • Lumber Prices Down and Lumber and Log Exports Up

    Lumber prices and volumes are still down int the U.S. While many experts (including me) expected a 2011 recovery, April housing starts cam in at 523,000, which is 24% below the April 2010 SAR figure. Furthermore, looking at lumber price futures today, July prices are down about 5 %. In this environment, the good news [...]

  • Hardwood Lumber & Softwood Wholesale Lumber Price Trends & News

    Wholesale lumber prices are still soft and with that, firms are struggling. Universal Forest Products announced a first quarter loss and cited ‘continued challenging economic conditions’. CME lumber prices as of today 4/15 are at US$149.90 for May.There was hope that the traditional spring demand for housing starts would increase demand for lumber inventory. February [...]

  • Lumber Price and Timber Supply 2011

    So the lumber industry is thenew year. Lumber supply is primarily driven by housing starts. According to NAHB, residential housing starts in 2011 will be 655,000 in 2011, which is 40 percent increase from 2009. Residential starts are projected to rise to 970,000 in 2012 and this will increase demand from stand timber supply to [...]

RSS Lumber News from Around the Web

  • Saturday Memo: Seattle's safety rating for biking, walking … Timber sale near ... - The Seattle Times (blog) April 19, 2014
    Saturday Memo: Seattle's safety rating for biking, walking … Timber sale near ...The Seattle Times (blog)Timber sale near Oso canceled: The state Department of Natural Resources has canceled a timber sale near the Oso mudslide. The state wants to further assess the proposed sale to ensure there are no risks to nearby homes. Read more about the decision  […]
  • Heartwood School teaches traditional timber arts - Boston Herald April 19, 2014
    Boston HeraldHeartwood School teaches traditional timber artsBoston HeraldIn this Tuesday, April 8, 2014 photo visiting instructor Don Pendergast, center, of the Northeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association instructs architects and builders gathered from across the country during a three-day course on grading structural ...and more »
  • Old lumber is a new trend - Albany Times Union April 19, 2014
    Old lumber is a new trendAlbany Times UnionCharlotte, N.C.. Reclaimed lumber is among the most environmentally friendly building materials because, as any 12-year-old can explain, recycling is good for us and the planet. The wood is beautiful. A floor of salvaged antique heart pine glows with ...and more »
  • Neighbors react to DNR decision about timber sale near Oso landslide - KING5.com April 19, 2014
    KOMO NewsNeighbors react to DNR decision about timber sale near Oso landslideKING5.com"In light of what the communities surrounding Oso have endured, I've directed department staff to review all the information on this nearby timber sale before moving forward," said Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark. It's news that families ...P […]
  • Fargo company to keep historic Bison Sports Arena bleacher lumber local - In-Forum April 19, 2014
    Fargo company to keep historic Bison Sports Arena bleacher lumber localIn-ForumFargo company to keep historic Bison Sports Arena bleacher lumber local. FARGO – Old bleachers from the Bison Sports Arena will get a new life, and could soon be available for North Dakota State University fans to purchase as benches, coffee tables or ...
  • Lee's Flooring and Rugs to close, owner retiring - The State April 19, 2014
    The StateLee's Flooring and Rugs to close, owner retiringThe StateAfter 25 years in Beaufort, Lee's Flooring and Rugs is closing, and owner Kathy Henry retiring. The last day for the business in Perimeter Walk at 745 Robert Smalls Parkway will be Monday. "I love our store and have enjoyed being a part of the local ...and more »
  • State delays timber sale near Oso mudslide, orders further review - The Seattle Times (blog) April 18, 2014
    State delays timber sale near Oso mudslide, orders further reviewThe Seattle Times (blog)The 188-acre sale of timber from state land, about five miles from the slide, had been reviewed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and was scheduled for auction next week. The Riley Rotor sale, mentioned in a Seattle Times story this week ...
  • Hardwood floor tips, gardening tips and rose lecture: AM Links for Friday ... - The Plain Dealer April 18, 2014
    Hardwood floor tips, gardening tips and rose lecture: AM Links for Friday ...The Plain DealerLOWDOWN ON FLOORS: Hardwood flooring can be a cost-effective choice over carpet, especially if the wood floors only need refreshing, says Mother Earth News' Guide to Installing Hardwood Flooring. This article covers the anatomy of a floor, laying down ...
  • Here's Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton Singing Pitbull and Ke$ha's “Timber” - TIME April 15, 2014
    Here's Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton Singing Pitbull and Ke$ha's “Timber”TIMEHey look, President Obama and former Secretary of State Clinton covered “Timber” by Pitbull and Ke$ha! Well, not really, but kind of. YouTube channel Baracksdubs carefully spliced together clips from the politicians' past speeches to make it sound like ...
  • 9 Things You're Doing To Ruin Your Hardwood Floors Without Even Realizing It - Huffington Post April 14, 2014
    9 Things You're Doing To Ruin Your Hardwood Floors Without Even Realizing ItHuffington PostHardwood floors are basically synonymous with stylish interiors these days -- and you already know that they require special care compared to other flooring choices. (For instance, they're the one thing you can't always clean naturally with a little ...a […]

Lumber | Hardwood Lumber