Tropical hardwood imports slide, Canadian imports
Imports of sawn tropical hardwood fell for a second
straight month. The 23,608 cubic metres imported in July
was down 3% from the previous month. Imports of Ipe
fell 15% to their lowest level of the year while imports of
Cedro and Balsa also hit a yearly low by falling 79% and
Gainers included Iroko imports, which more than
quadrupled in July to their highest level of the year, and
Sapelli imports, which also had their best month of the
year after rising 63%. Imports of most woods remain up
sharply for the year so far, however imports of Aningre
and Balsa are both down more than 50% year to date.
Imports from Cameroon and Peru both more than doubled
in July while imports from Malaysia surged by 70%.
Imports from Indonesia dropped by 46% to their lowest
total of the year while imports from Cote d¡¯Ivoire tumbled
After five months of solid growth, Canada¡¯s imports of
sawn tropical hardwood plunged by 52% in July. At
US$1.24 million, imports were 10.8% lower than the
previous July. Imports of Sapelli fell by 38%, imports of
Mahogany dropped 72%, and after smashing an all-time
record for Iroko imports in June, absolutely zero Iroko was
imported into Canada in July. Despite the tumble, total
imports remain ahead of last year by 33% through July.
Hardwood plywood imports down again
Imports of hardwood plywood fell for a fourth straight
month, declining by 8% in July. The 271,697 cubic metres
imported was the lowest volume month since April 2021
and was 10.5% less than the previous July.
Imports from Malaysia fell 78% in June to their lowest
level since November 2017, while imports from
Cambodia, Vietnam, and Ecuador also retreated by more
Imports from Russia rebounded somewhat in July rising
44% from the previous month, but they were still only
one-third of the volume compared with last July. Despite
the continued slide, total imports are up 33% over last year
Veneer imports see best month in three years
US imports of tropical hardwood veneer jumped 18% by
volume in July for their strongest month since July 2019.
Imports from Ghana more than doubled, imports from
China and Cote d¡¯Ivoire more than tripled, and imports
from India rose more than sixfold, bouncing back from a
very poor June.
Weak import figures from Italy (down 23% from June and
45% from the previous July) tempered some of the
growth. Year to date, tropical hardwood veneer imports
from Italy are only 4% better than last year while overall
imports are up 32%.
Hardwood flooring imports improve
Imports of hardwood flooring rose 6% by volume in July,
not quite returning to their May peak, but still a hearty
22% higher than the previous July. Imports from Brazil
fueled the gain, rising 29% in July. The gains from Brazil
more than made up from declines in imports from
Indonesia and China as well as a sharp 51% drop in
imports from Malaysia. Overall imports of hardwood
flooring are up 16% over 2021 year to date.
Imports of assembled flooring panels were down 14% in
July. Imports from Indonesia fell by 40%, imports from
Brazil fell by 33%, and imports from Canada fell 18%.
Imports from China rose 14% in July but were still 41%
less than that of the previous July. Overall imports of
assembled flooring panels this year are up 46% over 2021
Moulding imports dip
Imports of hardwood moulding dropped by 19% by
volume in July even though imports from Canada, the top
supplier, went up. Despite the 12% bump in imports from
Canada and a 64% increase in imports from Brazil, large
declines in imports from emerging suppliers like
Indonesia, Vietnam and Mexico dragged down the
monthly total. Imports from China also fell by 41%.
However, imports have been strong all year as July¡¯s
imports still manage to beat July 2021 imports by 10.2%
and total imports are up 34% year to date.
Wooden furniture imports cool
Imports of wooden furniture fell for a second consecutive
month in July. At US$2.1 billion, July imports were down
10% from June and were 4.8% less than that of the
previous July. Imports from Indonesia, Malaysia and
Vietnam all saw declines of more than 10%. Imports from
India were the only riser, gaining 10%. Despite the
pullback, wooden furniture imports remain up 8% over
2021 through July.
Exports of sawn hardwood expanded in first half of
In January-June, U.S. exports of hardwood lumber
expanded to 1.9 million cubic metres, a 12% increase over
the same period last year. The value of exports jumped
21% to US$1.3 billion. In first half of 2022, the average
price of hardwood lumber expanded 8% to US$679 per
m3, according to Lesprom Analytics.
In June, the average price for exported hardwood lumber
edged down 0.9% compared to the previous month at
US$690 per m3, according to Lesprom. This is 4.9% more
than a year ago when it was US$657.
Tropical sawnwood exports increased 10% in volume,
from 41,200 m3 in July 2021 to 45,500 m3 in July 2022.
In value, exports grew 35% from US$15 million to
US$20.3 million over the same period. As for tropical
plywood, the volume of exports fell around 20% and in
value by 10% from 7,300 m3 (US$4.2 million) in July
2021 to 5,900 m3 (US$3.8 million) in July 2022. The
exported value for wooden furniture value fell from
US$71.7 million in July 2021 to US$58.1 million in July
2022, a 19% decline.
Lumber prices decline to new 2022 low
Prices for softwood lumber in the US fell to a new 2022
low heading into September, according to Markets Insider.
The essential building commodity fell as much as 4% the
last week of August to US$465 per thousand board feet,
decisively below the low seen in early August of US$470.
The price decline may be seen by some as a positive sign,
but Goldman Sachs believes that is also indicative of a
housing market slowdown that may last longer than