Dealers who respond to the FEA Weekly Order Survey have local, regional and in many instances national footprints. Overall, our survey participants continue to report that their sales to builders, contractors and remodelers remain steady. Just not as strong as in the previous weeks and months. This week, some areas did experience a modest uptick in sales. While others, in the path of Hurricane Sally and previously Hurricane Laura and the wildfires in California, Oregon, Washington and Idaho have a considerably more conservative outlook on their markets and sales. All respondents could not help but note the record setting level of builder confidence for September that was reported today. Most viewed it as a positive sign for future projects and sales. After twenty-two straight weeks of non-stop price increases, the lumber and panel markets posted some modest \ moderate gains, but some lower prices have also appeared in select species, widths and lengths. The $ 340 MBM gap between the cash markets and CME Lumber Futures also had buyers anxious. With many buyers anticipating that prices will fall as quickly as they climbed. However, those buyers are quickly finding that mills with production schedules that range from late September through early November are neither ready, nor prepared to lower prices to the extent many buyers are saying prices need to be at before they can return to the marketplace. Those mills in the path of the natural disasters, have in many cases not been in operation for the past 1 – 2 weeks and access to the woods is limited, which, in turn, will be pressuring their existing log decks when they return to production. And with that, the stand-off between the buyers and producers is about to get underway.
FEA compiles the Wood Markets News from various 3rd party sources to provide readers with the latest news impacting forest product markets. Opinions or views expressed in these articles do not necessarily represent those of FEA.