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Random Lengths

Updated every Friday afternoon at 2:00 pm (Pacific Time). Last update: June 22, 2018.

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Random Lengths Lumber and Panel Market Report

Go to: Lumber Report |Panel Report | Industry News in Through a Knothole

This report contains brief excerpts from our full 12-page newsletter, which includes prices of more than 1,600 lumber and panel items, plus detailed summaries of market activity. Contact Random Lengths for a free sample issue.

Random Lengths Lumber Market Report

Prices of framing lumber continued to plummet, but in some cases the drops drew in buyers. The stronger level of activity was most noticeable in Western S-P-F and Coast species, and left traders wondering whether buyers responded to prices hitting value targets or they simply needed to step in and replenish inventories. In any case, the price trend pointed sharply downward, and the Random Lengths Framing Lumber Composite Price shed $17 for the week, a second-consecutive double-digit drop.

  This Week
Jun 22
Last Week
Jun 15
Year Ago
Random Lengths Framing Lumber Composite Price* $554 $571 $397
KD Western S-P-F #2&Btr 2x4 R/L Mill Price 582 615 372
KD Eastern S-P-F #1&2 2x4 R/L, delivered Great Lakes 686 712 464
Green Douglas Fir Std&Btr 2x4 R/L (Portland) 560 575 415
Southern Pine (Westside) #2 2x4 R/L 568 588 403
KD Coast Hem-Fir #2&Btr 2x4 R/L 615 640 395
Ponderosa Pine (Inland) #2&Btr 1x12 R/L 770 770 700
* Weighted average of 15 key items


Random Lengths Framing Lumber Composite Graph


Random Lengths Panel Market Report

Structural panel prices lost ground amid another week of lackluster sales. A desire to sell quick-shipping loads ahead of quarter-end led to deep discounts in some OSB producing regions. Most of the market’s focus was on Western Canada and delivered markets in the West. Southern Pine plywood sales were elusive and confined to limited volumes to supplement lean inventories. Prices of rated sheathing spanned wide ranges. Western Fir plywood trading was subdued for a third consecutive week.

(f.o.b. mill prices) This Week
Jun 22
Last Week
Jun 15
Year Ago
Random Lengths Structural Panel Composite Price* $565 $573 $410
Southern (west-east) 15/32-inch 3-ply rated sheathing plywood 530-565 550-582 345-370
Southern (west-east) 15/32-inch 4-ply rated sheathing plywood 535-570 555-593 350-375
Western 1/2-inch 4-ply rated sheathing plywood 567 571 427
North Central 7/16-inch Oriented Strand Board 445 445 337
*Weighted average of 11 key items




Industry News In "Through A Knothole"

Below are headlines of recent articles in the "Through A Knothole" section of our full 12-page newsletter, featuring articles of interest to the industry, including production/price trends, market analysis, trade issues, timber supplies, and much more. Contact Random Lengths for a free sample issue.

This Week in the "Through a Knothole" Section of Random Lengths

  • The popularity of long stud trims continues to grow, as new homes constructed with 9- and 10-foot ceilings become standard practice. North American producers who responded to Random Lengths’ stud survey reported that 104-5/8 inches was the most heavily produced length in 2017, with 28.5% of the total. That is up from 27.8% in 2015, which represented the first time an 8-foot trim wasn’t the most heavily produced length.

  • The third quarter will begin with softwood lumber prices fading from record-shattering levels reached in early June. How extensively prices fall or rebound in the wake of an unprecedented first-half run will command traders’ attention through the summer. Traders throughout the distribution network will look for a respite from the transportation nightmare that has exasperated them all year.

  • North American softwood lumber exports to China are on pace to post a fifth consecutive annual decline. Volumes in 2017 plunged 29% from a 2013 peak of 3.75 billion board feet to 2.65 bbf.

  • Generated by a surge in the Midwest, U.S. housing starts in May hit their highest monthly level since 2007 at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.350 million units.

  • Supplies of imported panels from Brazil have been rising steadily this year, but haven’t had much impact yet on prices of Southern Pine plywood. Constrained domestic supplies and lean inventories early in the year led to robust demand that likely diminished potential downward price pressure from imports.


Sunday, June 24, 2018


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