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Wood Products Prices in The U.S. 

16-31th August  2011

Report from North America

  Renovation and remodelling to be the main drivers of
moulding demand in 2011

Renovation and remodelling of existing homes is so far the
main driver of moulding demand in 2011, producers
learned at a meeting of the Moulding and Millwork
Producers Association earlier this year. At the meeting the
following market trends were identified, as reported by the
Door & Window Manufacturer Magazine:

Retail outlets dominate the distribution of moulding and
millwork products. Retail sales account for 65% while
35% of products sell through professional dealers and
direct industry sales. As a result, the Big Box home
improvement stores have a strong influence on the market.

Since 2008 retail and professional dealers have
consolidated and more than 1,200 retail outlets have been
closed by just three of the US largest building material
suppliers.

Residential renovation and remodelling is expected to
remain the main driver of moulding and millwork
consumption in the near future as the US housing stock is
aging and new house construction remains at very low
levels.

Finger-jointed mouldings account for over half of the US
market, followed by MDF. Solid wood moulding has an
estimated market share of just 6%. The market for MDF
mouldings is expected to increase through 2012, mainly at
the expense of pine mouldings as prices for pine raw
materials are increasing.

Second quarter decline in sawn tropical hardwood imports
The value of US imports of sawn tropical hardwood
continued to decline in the second quarter of 2011 after
gaining substantially in 2010. The value of year-to-date
imports is still significantly higher than in 2010 (+19%).
In terms of volume there was a 7% gain in year-to-date
imports.

The difference between the rates of change in the value
and volume of imports is largely due to the US dollar
weakening in 2011.

US imports of sawn tropical hardwood were US$49.8
million in the second quarter of 2011, down from US$52.8
million in the first quarter. Among the species that gained
the most year-to-date are virola (+105%), sapelli (+96%),
keruing (+91%) and ipe (+54%).

Year-to-date import values of the following species
declined from the previous year: teak (-29%), mahogany (-
12%), acajou dAfrique (-7%) and balsa (-3%).

On a monthly basis, the volume of June sawn tropical
hardwood imports increased from May by 18% to 17,912
cu.m.

Imports of balsa were 3,049 cu.m. (-17% year-to-date), ipe
1,668 cu.m. (+35% year-to-date), keruing 1,659 cu.m.
(+80% year-to-date), acajou dAfrique 2,059 cu.m. (-21%
year-to-date), mahogany 1,004 cu.m. (-16% year-to-date),
and virola 2,184 cu.m. (+114% year-to-date).

China main beneficiary from increased US hardwood
plywood imports

US hardwood plywood imports increased by 18% to
228,740 cu.m. in June. Year-to-date plywood imports
grew by 8% with China as the main beneficiary.

Imports from China were 175,312 cu.m. (+36% year-todate),
accounting for 77% of total US hardwood plywood
imports in June.

Imports from Indonesia were 8,995 cu.m. (-30% year-todate),
from Malaysia 5,505 cu.m. (-56% year-to-date) and
from Ecuador 3,401 cu.m. (-12%).

Growth in hardwood moulding imports from Brazil
US imports of hardwood mouldings have increased after a
brief decline in May. The value of imports was US$20.0
million in June, up 17% from the previous month.

Brazilian shipments account for 37% of year-to-date
imports compared to 27% from China. In June, Brazil
shipped hardwood mouldings worth US$7.9 million to the
US (+59% year-to-date) while imports from China were
US$5.2 million (+1% year-to-date) and from Malaysia
US$1.3 million (+50% year-to-date).

Malaysia largest supplier of hardwood flooring
US hardwood flooring imports rose by 29% to US$2.4
million in June, up 61% compared to the same period in
2010. Malaysia was the largest supplier of hardwood
flooring imports at US$637,000 (+109% year-to-date).

China exported hardwood flooring valued at US$564,000
(+49% year-to-date). Imports from Brazil were
US$217,000 (+23% year-to-date) and from Indonesia
US$110,000 (+143% year-to-date).

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Abbreviations

LM       Loyale Merchant, a grade of log parcel  Cu.m         Cubic Metre
QS        Qualite Superieure    Koku         0.278 Cu.m or 120BF
CI          Choix Industriel                                                       FFR           French Franc
CE         Choix Economique                                                        SQ              Sawmill Quality
CS         Choix Supplimentaire      SSQ            Select Sawmill Quality
FOB      Free-on-Board     FAS            Sawnwood Grade First and
KD        Kiln Dry                               Second 
AD        Air Dry        WBP           Water and Boil Proof
Boule    A Log Sawn Through and Through MR              Moisture Resistant
              the boards from one log are bundled                      pc         per piece      
              together                      ea                each      
BB/CC  Grade B faced and Grade C backed MBF           1000 Board Feet          
              Plywood   MDF           Medium Density Fibreboard
BF        Board Foot F.CFA         CFA Franc        
Sq.Ft     Square Foot              Price has moved up or down

Source: ITTO'  Tropical Timber Market Report

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