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Market Brief

Following is excerpted from the August issue of the Hardwood Leader. While exports lagged in May and June, domestic demand for hardwood lumber continued to improve. New and existing home sales have expanded of late, driving better demand for cabinets, moulding and millwork. Domestic flooring manufacturers have not yet seen significant sales improvements, however, probably because flooring imports have accelerated faster than new domestic flooring demand. Continued improvements in housing will depend on much better job market gains. More than a million working-age people dropped out of the labor force in June, and labor force participation is the lowest since the late-1970s. We expect Asian and Mexican purchasing to pick up in Q4, which should begin to rebalance supply and demand for Red Oak and other export-dependent species. Even Europe should show some improvement by then. The Hardwood Leader contains essential forecasts for industry members. Call 704-543-4408 to learn more.