News & Opinions
The latest news and insights from Hanley Wood’s outspoken experts and key thought-leaders throughout the residential and commercial design and construction industry.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the Producer Price Indexes (PPI) for July. Producer prices for finished goods were flat in July after rising 0.8% in June and 0.5% in May. Excluding food and energy, the core index continued its recent stability rising 0.1%. A 0.2% monthly decline in energy prices and flat food prices held the headline index flat despite the 0.1% increase in core prices.
PPIs for softwood lumber and OSB continued the descent that began earlier this year. Softwood lumber prices declined 2.3% from June to July, extending the decline from the recent April peak to 16.6%.Read More
Journal of Light Construction / June 27, 2013
Don’t watch the news on lumber prices too closely: you might get whiplash and mood swings.
Houston station KHOU had it one way on May 29: “Housing boom drives up lumber prices,” by Jeremy Desel. “”The supply chain can’t keep up with what is needed. The price goes up and that’s just the way it is,” builder Zac Murtha told the station. “The price of lumber is usually seasonal, but home builders didn’t see the normal drop this winter. Now, prices are poised to go even higher,” KHOU reported. “It’s not just lumber—concreteRead More
Paul Emrath / NAHB / June 21, 2013
The home building industry is facing emerging shortages of key building materials like lumber and wall board, according to surveys conducted by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association (NLBMDA) in May.
Among builders, the highest incidence of shortages was for oriented strand board (OSB), with 22 percent of builders reporting shortages, followed by gypsum wall board (20 percent), framing lumber (18 percent) and plywood (also 18 percent). Except for wall board, the incidence of shortages for these products was higherRead More
Charles Wardell / PROSALES / May 9, 2013
Predictions of continuing shortages in dimensional lumber are being borne out in the marketplace, and industry observers say dealers should keep enough lumber on hand for jobs sold for delivery over the next quarter, if possible, and work hard to cultivate good relationships with lenders, since credit remains tight, and lumber prices high.
The gap between lumber supply and demand has fueled an ongoing price escalation, with the Random Length Lumber Price Index increasing by more than 60% from late 2011 to March 2013. At the producer level, prices for Douglas fir sawlogs reached a five-yearRead More
Julie Schmit / USA TODAY / April 30, 2013
The Plum Creek Timber mill in Evergreen, Mont., is far removed from the housing recovery making headlines nationwide — but its fortunes are not.
After a four-year shutdown, the mill reopened in March thanks to rising lumber prices and a resurgence in home building.
The mill, which makes studs used to frame houses, now employs 30, half of its former workforce. It carries a $1.5 million annual payroll that’ll roll through the local economy.
“It’s a big deal to see this mill reopen,” says Tom Ray, Plum Creek vice president.
The recovery of the housing market is benefitingRead More