Friday 23 September 2022. – The US housing starts jumped unexpectedly by 12.2% in August 2022 compared to July. However, the starts had dropped in July which partly explains the August recovery.
The longer-term indicator, housing permits, lowered by 10% in August according to the US Commerce Department data. The annual rate in August, 1.52 million units, is the lowest since June 2020.
The soaring building material prices as well as the higher interest rates are killing the builders’ confidence in the USA. The European sentiment is similar but is topped with an energy crisis.
At the moment there are extremely few indicators telling that the wood panel market is getting busier. However, business is not as bad as the market signals make us feel. The peak is over but some product groups are still doing good results, and some are very good.
Demand and supply seldom walk hand in hand. Wood panels have had a bumpy ride in recent years, and bumpy we like. Sustainable wood products will continue to offer opportunities. In Q4, as well as in 2023. And particularly further in the future.