Wood Business

Industry News Markets
Current lumber price increases mirror one year ago


October 19, 2021
By Madison's Lumber Reporter

Similar to this time last year, when lumber prices started rising to reach what was then the all-time historical high, solid wood construction materials prices have been ticking up in the past few weeks. This is traditionally not a time for lumber prices to be increasing. The latest U.S. housing starts and home sales and price data has been incredibly strong…will we see lumber prices keep going up to the end of this year? Only time will tell.

Still pushing up at an unusual time of year, for the week of Oct. 8, 2021 the price of Western S-P-F 2×4 #2&Btr KD (RL) was US$580 mfbm. This is up by +$40, or +7%, from the previous week when it was $540. That week’s price is up by +$92, or +19%, from one month ago when it was $488.

Buyers were increasingly frustrated trying to secure enough lumber and studs to furnish downstream jobsites.

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“Plywood prices remained flat, while OSB levels in the West found some traction; steady demand persisted for studs and dimension.” — Madison’s Lumber Reporter

Unyielding demand highlighted shrinking overall supply of Western S-P-F commodities in the United States. According to sawmills late-October order files prevailed, thus prompt availability of wood was scant.

Canadian Western S-P-F lumber commodities continued to display strength in both demand and pricing. Primary and secondary suppliers each reported steady takeaway, with the former extending order files into late-October or early-November.

“Southern Yellow Pine demand was stable in most categories, however with some softness in low grades. Another bout of heavy rain supplanted a recent spate of drier, timber harvesting-friendly weather in the U.S. South.” — Madison’s Lumber Reporter

When compared to the same week last year, when it was $960, for the week of Oct. 8 the price of Western S-P-F 2×4 is down by -$380, or -40%. Compared to two years’ ago when it was $368, this week’s price is up by +$212, or +58%.