RISI Crow Market Recap — May 11, 2018
LUMBERYARDS

RISI Crow’s Market Recap for May 11

BY HBSDealer Staff

A price index of lumber and panels used in actual construction for May 11, 2018.

Western: regional species perimeter foundation
Southern: regional species slab construction

Crow’s Market Recap: A condensed recap of the market conditions for the major North American softwood lumber and panel products as reported in Crow’s Weekly Market Report.


Lumber

Limited mill offerings of SPF at both eastern and western Canadian mills and eager demand kept upward pressure on #2&Btr lumber prices. Gains remained most prevalent in 2×4, with any offerings quickly bought up.

  • Southern Pine producers ramped up prices aggressively while seeing buyers willing to participate at sharply higher levels. High prices, following 4-5 weeks of escalation, prompted mills that typically extend lead times no longer than two weeks go out to three.
  • Strong demand and extended order files aided upward price pressure in Coastal species. Buyers continued to purchase at a fevered pace, those sales aided by limited volumes of lumber still being offered at Canadian mills. Traders reported significant volumes of US produced Doug Fir moving into areas that typically purchase SPF.
  • Inland lumber markets continued the strong performance of the last several weeks. Led by Hem-Fir, Inland species advanced in both pace and price intensity throughout the week. Narrows were especially strong in Hem-Fir.
  • Tight stud supplies and order files stretching into June kept prices moving higher. Limited availability prompted buyers to look high and low for coverage, allowing mills to sell readily whatever offerings they came up with.
  • Ponderosa Pine industrial lumber prices continued to hold steady. Shop has fluctuated slightly over the past year, but neither 5/4 nor 6/4 has shown strong vigor. Ponderosa Pine Selects and Commons have become somewhat sluggish. Although Selects remain stable, Commons showed definite tendencies to sag in pricing. Most significant in this respect was the #2 Common, which lagged in both pace and price.
  • Some softening was also reported in the thinly produced ESLP 4/4 Commons, and other pine species have found markets to be weaker than anticipated.
  • Trading in the Western Red Cedar market remained steady. Buyers purchased fill-in volumes where necessary. Some lead times extended well into June.


Panels

OSB activity picked up and rolled this week as a little panic set in among those trying to meet a strengthening spring buy. Buyers cautiously avoided long positions with already high prices gaining more ground. Transportation issues improved slightly in Canada but were sticky in the US South.

  • Southern Pine plywood producers managed to extend order files while raising prices, evidence of the market’s strength. A wide range of buyers participated even as most mill lead times extended into the week of June 4.
  • Western Fir plywood buyers continued to purchase at a decent pace but not in the same numbers as the prior week. Sheathing prices remained solid. Producers bumped quotes in modest increments and managed to sell at moderately higher levels by Friday.
  • Canadian plywood activity slowly picked up strength this week. Some early week discounts helped prod the market. Order files moved out and the market firmed, though some mills are keeping an ear open for firm volume offers. Pricing was sideways from last Friday’s Crow’s net ($614/msf, Toronto, 3/8” basis).
  • Trends in both particleboard and MDF remained in place. MDF producers often described active markets in which mill order files remained strong. Particleboard sales remained steady, although some excess volumes continued to emerge in that market.

For more on RISI, click here.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

Which of the following hardware business trends is the most significant:
RISI Crow Market Recap — May 4, 2018
LUMBERYARDS

RISI Crow’s Market Recap for May 4

BY HBSDealer Staff

A price index of lumber and panels used in actual construction for May 4, 2018.

Western: regional species perimeter foundation
Southern: regional species slab construction

Crow’s Market Recap: A condensed recap of the market conditions for the major North American softwood lumber and panel products as reported in Crow’s Weekly Market Report.


Lumber

The urgency to cover needs increased among SPF buyers as availability at mills declined. Strong price gains and limited mill offerings were sources of frustration for many buyers. While some producers sold out items through the month of May, others maintained shorter lead times by going off the market at various intervals.

  • Southern Pine lumber buyers approached the market with an abundance of needs and purchased accordingly. Strong sales out of retail and distribution yards prompted steady replenishment. Tighter supplies at mills and secondaries needing to place orders generated a more frenetic tone.
  • Availability among many Coastal species lumber items tightened further, placing increased upward pressure on those prices. Some producers reported lead times extending into late May.
  • Inland lumber producers offered several reasons why this became a watershed week for lumber pricing. Noting that Canada’s inability to ship their entire production into the US no longer provides the buffer that previously existed.
  • Demand for studs remained strong, setting the stage for a mix of firm to significantly higher prices. After a strong beginning to the week, availability declined as mills went off the market at various intervals. Some came back on quoting considerably higher, defensive levels.
  • New Zealand Radiata Pine activity has accelerated dramatically in recent months, but not to the United States.
  • Ponderosa Pine Mldg&Btr and Shop have shown little price change in many weeks. Modest pressure on prices did little to push numbers upward, but lack of significant volume kept prices from depreciating. Ponderosa Pine Selects remained essentially on hold with regard to prices. Commons, however, were “Still hit and miss,” according to one source. A primary reason for this was still the lack of desirable tallies.
  • Activity remained steady to improving in several Western Red Cedar consuming regions. Better weather in the Northeast and Upper Midwest generated mildly improved takeaways from retail yards and home improvement stores. Retailers sought coverage from distributors after selling packages they refuse to carry in inventory.


Panels

The waiting game continued this week in OSB markets; however, by Friday morning, some buying activity picked up in the United States. Southern markets saw the most activity, responding to a bump-up in retail takeaway and an unexpected week-long shut at a major mill.

  • Buyers continued to purchase Southern Pine rated sheathing at a pace exceeding the available supply. A wide range of customer sectors participated. Wholesalers seemed particularly active, confident in at least the market’s near-term prospects.
  • The Western Fir plywood market continued to gain a degree of momentum. Producers sold improved volumes and managed to extend lead times further. Prices improved as a result, and carload volume discounts dissipated. Traders reported improved confidence throughout the market.
  • Canadian plywood activity was mellow this week but showed growing signs of strength Friday. Western activity was stronger than eastern. Mills are firm on price, having rebuffed counters under established levels.
  • Both particleboard and MDF markets remained active, with steady to slightly improved sales most often the result. A few particleboard mills in the West experienced a relatively significant increase in sales. Producers seemed somewhat content with order files extending into the latter half of May.

For more on RISI, click here.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

Which of the following hardware business trends is the most significant:
Decking deck
LUMBERYARDS

Simpson Strong-Tie engineer talks deck safety

May is Deck Safety Month and the perfect time to increase safety awareness.

BY HBSDealer Staff

Decks don’t last forever. While modern pro deck builders have transformed a construction niche by vastly improving structural engineering and deck safety, more can be done to educate consumers, DIYers and even general remodelers on the need to inspect and repair/replace failing decks and deck components.

Simpson Strong-Tie branch engineer David Finkenbinder, P.E., has spent large portions of his decade-plus-long career dedicated to deck structural engineering and deck safety.

A graduate student of the nationally renowned Wood-Based Composites Center at Virginia Tech, Finkenbinder sits on the committee overseeing the DCA-6 Prescriptive Residential Wood Deck Construction Guide and also holds degrees in applied physics (B.S. from Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania) and agricultural and biological engineering of wood structures (B.S. from Penn State).

David Finkenbinder — Simpson Strong-Tie

David Finkenbinder

Finkenbinder says the month of May, which is also Deck Safety Month, is the perfect time to increase homeowner awareness and inspection of decks. With remodeling expenditures on the rise, deck inspection, repair and replacement is a premium value-add opportunity for remodelers, contractors and building material dealers alike. Finkenbinder can discuss the top trends in deck construction, key safety and structural engineering issues and the research and development that continues to take place to address corrosion of metal fasteners in exterior environments.

What follows is a Q&A with Finkenbinder in which he answers questions concerning the evolution of deck safety, the average deck’s life expectancy and common causes of deck accidents:

 

What are the common causes of deck accidents?

The most common causes of accidents are connection issues or degradation of the deck structure and connections. Connection problems can be the result of improper construction when the deck was initially built, like using nails to fasten a ledger board to the house. On the degradation side, decks can experience corrosion of metal connectors and fasteners, or decay of the wood deck framing. Often, corrosion is the result of not using the proper connector or fastener material for the type of preservative wood treatment used on the deck framing, or simply an unsuitable fastener to deal with regional weather and environmental conditions. Wood decay can result from improper flashing behind the ledger, or the use of other detailing and finishes that trap moisture.

 

What is the age of the average deck and how often should a deck be inspected?

It’s commonly estimated that there are approximately 40 million existing decks in the United States, which run from recently-built decks to ones that are at or past their service life. Most experts estimate the average life expectancy for a deck to be 10 to 15 years, a loose number that can vary widely depending on exposure conditions and materials used. The main point is for consumers to realize that their deck has a lifespan. We recommend homeowners take a good look at their deck once a year — just like checking your fire alarms annually on a certain date.

The beginning of spring is a great time for that inspection, when the homeowner is cleaning off their deck from winter and getting outdoor spaces prepared for months of backyard barbecues. We recommend homeowners review The 5 Warning Signs of an Unsafe Deck online and contact a professional to determine if a repair, retrofit or rebuild is necessary when a warning sign is noticed.

 

What can be done to better protect the integrity of a deck?

A good starting point is to work with a professional deck builder in the beginning, to ensure that your deck is built to or above the building code and that it is built with the proper materials. If your deck was built previously, the annual inspection helps keep you aware of the condition of your deck and address any issues that may be unsafe.

 

How has the construction and safety elements of decks changed in recent years?

The main thing that has changed recently is that the building code is starting to catch up in terms of having information for decks, where it did not have much before. Deck safety is a priority for building officials, and the code needs to provide information on what the minimum requirements are for a deck. The code now includes important information for joist and beam spans, posts and ledger connections, but it still has a way to go. Important topics such as guards and stairs are sparsely covered.

While the building code itself is developing, a wide cross section of the industry (including the National Association of Home Builders, the North American Deck and Railing Association, university researchers and building product manufacturers) has teamed up with the American Wood Council to produce a comprehensive guide for designing and building a single-level deck. This guide, the DCA6, is a free download on their website, and a version is available for the 2009, 2012 and 2015 editions of the International Residential Code.

 

Do you expect the importance of deck safety and structural integrity to elevate in the coming years?

I do expect these topics to continue to be an important concern in the coming years. The industry itself has come a long way but is still engaged in an ongoing effort to educate the public so that their deck is not an afterthought. I also mentioned professional deck builders, but a good portion of decks are either built by do-it-yourselfers or contractors that may not specialize in decks. The goal of having more information for safe deck building will be helpful for these types of builders as well.

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

Which of the following hardware business trends is the most significant: