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 Sweden: Reduced sales of glued laminated timber in the first three months of 2024
[April 19, 2024]

Construction site where you can see a glulam frame.
The foundry in Malmö, which is largely built from glulam. Photo: Martinsons Byggsystem

Sales of glulam have decreased by 23 percent during the first three months of the year compared to last year, according to new statistics from Swedish Wood. Despite the gloomy figures, the industry looks bright for the future.

According to the latest glulam statistics from Swedish Wood, sales of project beams, which are sold directly to construction contractors and real estate developers, were down 42% in March 2024.
Storage beams, which are sold through builders' merchants, fell by 24% compared to the same month last year.

In a comparison between the first quarter of 2023 and 2024, sales of project beams have decreased by 21 percent while storage beams have decreased by 28 percent. In total, this means a decrease in sales of 23% during the first three months of the year.

Ketchup effect

" Despite a tough market situation, we are positive about the future, not least given the role glulam plays in the green transition. Glulam products contribute in many ways to reducing the environmental impact of the construction sector and promote development towards a more sustainable future," says Johan Fröbel, Head of Technology and Trade at Swedish Wood.

" The market is cautious and we have a lot of quotes out where the larger orders take longer to go to business. Now we are preparing for an upswing and we will probably see a ketchup effect when the economy turns and construction starts again," says Carl-Magnus Nordkvist, sales manager at Moelven Töreboda AB.

The new root deduction may have an impact

The NIER's confidence indicator for construction and civil engineering decreased in March 2024 by 2.1 points to 92.6 compared to February. This is a figure that is compiled through answers to questions regarding the businesses' finances over the past and coming twelve months.

Construction firms are less likely than in February to expect construction to decrease over the next three months, while civil engineering firms expect construction to increase.

"Our hope is that sales of warehouse beams through builders' merchants will benefit from the government's decision to increase the ceiling for the root and box deductions from July 1 this year. A possible interest rate cut in May will also strengthen households' purchasing power and the opportunities to renovate and start conversion and extension projects," says Daniel Edman, Sales Manager, Construction Trade & Industry at Setra Trävaror AB.

Source:  byggvarlden.se