The forest products industry is complex and hyper-changeable. To successfully play in this universe, you need advice, data, and an overview from an unbiased, details-obsessed, independent source. Economic forecasts, lumber, timber, panels, mass timber and engineered wood products – this is FEA.
If a tree falls in the forest, we not only hear it – we follow it, analyze it and track it.
Whatever’s happening along the forest supply chain, from planting to felling to final use, we’re watching it, regionally, nationally, internationally. FEA people seek out every forestry detail, are obsessed with economics, trends and providing clients with deeply-rooted advice that informs their important decisions.
Why we’re here
We formed FEA when we recognized a need in the industry for impartial, exhaustive analysis, accessible data and customized consulting. FEA analysts come from all areas of the timber industry – when they talk, industry listens.
FEA markets our knowledge and data through analytical products that cover the forest product industry. These include Monthly Advisors and newsletters for near-term analysis, the Quarterly Forecasting Service for a longer-term outlook and an extensive historical database, as well as the industry's only comprehensive, up-to-date, mill-level capacity reports, categorized by sector.
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development jointly announced on Friday that new residential single-family home sales for May 2022 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rated (SAAR) of 696,000, according to estimates. This is 10.7% above the revised April rate of 629,000 but is -5.9% below May 2021.
In its latest report, Redfin, reported that for the week ending June 19, homebuying demand pulled back further as mortgage rates reached their highest level in since 2009. Redfin’s Homebuyers Demand Index—which measures buyers request for home tours, offers, and other requests for agents’ help—posted its largest decline in over 2 years.
The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported on Thursday that, according to its Purchase Applications Payment Index, which measures how new monthly mortgage payments vary across time (relative to income) using data from MBA’s Weekly Applications Survey, homebuyer affordability was mostly unchanged in May.
Sanctions on Russia, including the ban on using the SWIFT money transfer system, will severely limit its ability to participate in international trade, but the impacts to its softwood log and lumber trade are likely to be less affected than other industries.
Over half of Russia’s softwood lumber trade and three-quarters of its softwood log trade is with China (graphs below). China has not imposed sanctions on Russia and has payment systems independent from the SWIFT system. Only ocean shipments from St. Petersburg, which account for around 25% of China’s total volume from Russia, are traded with letters of credit based in US dollars. Some contracts have already been changed to Chinese RMB payments, however trade from Northwest Russia is likely to suffer some in the coming months.
Over the 15 months—since North America’s economies hit their pandemic-induced bottoms—much discussion in the wood products industry has centred on access to employees. Producers of solid wood products were particularly challenged to meet the demand from builders and DIYers, resulting in record-high prices for finished goods. Of course, 2020 was not just the year of the pandemic: It also saw a record number of hurricanes in the South, record fires in the West, and social unrest nationwide. What a year!
Over the past year—a large portion of which was impacted by the coronavirus—much discussion in the wood products industry has centred on access to employees. While many wood products prices soared to new highs amid solid housing starts and strong residential improvement spending, producers were challenged to meet demand from builders and DIYers. During this period of high demand and high prices for finished goods, timber prices and production levels were largely unaffected. Of course, 2020 was not just the year of the pandemic: it also saw an unprecedented number of hurricanes in the South, record fires in the West, and social unrest nationwide. What a year!
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