Softwood pulpwood saw higher price increases worldwide than hardwood pulpwood, resulting in the widest margin between the two fiber sources in 14 years

Times have been good for lumber producers in 2020, with profitability rising worldwide. Most countries tracked by the Wood Resource Quarterly have had their highest gross margins in at least two years, with North America standing out as the continent with the most spectacular profit improvements.

Strong lumber sales and a weakening US dollar moved sawlog prices upward in many markets worldwide in the 3Q/20. The most significant price increases occurred in Western US, Northern and Eastern Europe, and Oceania.

Softwood log exports from Russia have been in steady decline for the past 15 years and could reach zero in 2022 if President Putin’s new log export ban is implemented.

European lumber exporters have expanded their sales overseas from 30% to 45% over the past ten years, with Asia receiving a fifth of total exports in 2020, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly

Sawlog prices fell in most of the major regions of the world in the 2Q/20. A strengthening US dollar, weaker log demand early in the quarter, and sufficient log supply in some markets contributed to the lower prices.

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