Lumber Prices Have Returned to Earth

Lower demand for new housing means falling prices for lumber
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2022 1:46 PM CDT
Finally, Good News on Lumber Prices
Time to build?   (Getty Images/Melena-Nsk)

Sure, winter's coming, but now's the time to build that deck. As the Wall Street Journal reports, the price of lumber has fallen to its lowest point in more than two years—back to pre-pandemic levels. Lumber futures settled at $429.30 per thousand board feet on Tuesday—down more than 70% from the March high and 33% from the same time a year ago. Cash framing lumber prices were at $520 as of Tuesday—down more than 60% from early March, according to wood-pricing service Random Lengths.

With the rise in mortgage rates, home builders have "faced an enormous uptick in cancellations over the past several months," Alexander Snyder of CenterSquare Investment Management tells Barron's. "The trickle down of higher rates is cascading into lower demand for new houses, which leads to lower demand for lumber, which leads to lower prices for lumber." The outlet reports new home construction in the US was down 10.9% in both June and July but "climbed by a seasonally adjusted 12.2%" in August "on the back of a rise in new apartment construction." (More wood stories.)

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