U.S. sawmills produced less lumber in December

martie 17, 2023
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U.S. sawmills in December produced 2.645 billion board ft. (bbf) of softwood lumber, down 10.5% from the 2.954 bbf produced in December 2021, and down 9.7% compared with November 2022’s 2.930 bbf, according to the Western Wood Products Assn.’s Lumber Track report for December 2022, dated March 13. 

Western U.S. sawmills in December contributed 960 million board ft. (mmbf) to the total, down 15.0% from the prior year’s 1.130 bbf, while output from Southern sawmills fell 7.4% year-over-year to 1.566 bbf from 1.692 bbf. Compared with November, Western sawmill production decreased 10.8% and Southern output decreased 9.1%.

Apparent U.S. softwood lumber consumption in December was 3.682 bbf, down 9.4% from 4.063 bbf in December 2021 and 7.9% less than 3.997 bbf in November. 

U.S. production as a percentage of practical capacity averaged 74% in December, down from 81% in December 2021 and 82% in November. 

U.S. inventories in December rose 3.5% year-over-year to 3.078 bbf from 2.974 bbf.