Finding a Bottom - Market Update

Market Update May 13th

Photo Courtesy Flickr User tuchodi

Photo Courtesy Flickr User tuchodi

After three weeks of falling prices, the market seems to have found a trading level. Large volumes of dimension lumber were sold over the last few weeks at discounted levels. Western SPF Studs were the most vulnerable, dropping in price by double digits for a third straight week. Most Southern Pine dimension items dropped in price, especially 2x12, which fell back in line with other widths.

OSB ended the week flat in all regions as mills were able to move product without discounting. Only a few mills had prompt offerings and most have extended their orders files to mid June.

We were told last year that we would see volatility in commodity prices in 2013 and that is exactly what we are experiencing. The word “confusing” also has been used by many to describe the current market. Some were telling us that the market would “continue to climb” just a few weeks ago and now others are saying that we will see lower prices in the weeks ahead. The one thing we know for sure is, that the housing industry is in recovery mode and with that there will be swings in commodity prices in the weeks and months ahead. The difficult part for buyers and sellers is managing those swings.