US sawmills produce 17.602 bbf of softwood lumber in H1, down 1.1% yoy

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U.S. sawmills in the first six months of 2019 produced 17.602 billion board ft. (bbf) of softwood lumber, down 1.1% from output in the same period last year of 17.797 bbf, the Western Wood Products Assn. reported in its latest Lumber Track report.

Western U.S. sawmills accounted for 7.215 bbf of the six-month total, a decline of 2.4% from 7.393 bbf a year earlier, while output at southern U.S. sawmills slipped 0.1% to 9.560 bbf from 9.566 bbf.

Output from other regions in the first half of 2019 was down by 1.2% year-over-year to 828 million board ft. (mmbf) from 838 mmbf.

In the month of June, production by U.S. sawmills dropped 5.6% year-over-year to 2.822 bbf from 2.990 bbf, and was down 5.4% compared with the prior month’s 2.981 bbf.

Western U.S. sawmills in the month of June contributed 1.148 bbf, a drop of 6.6% from 1.229 bbf a year ago, and down 7.4% from May’s 1.239 bbf.

Southern U.S. sawmills in June accounted for 1.541 bbf of production volume, a 4.9% decline from 1.620 bbf last year, and down 3.8% from 1.602 bbf in the previous month.

Apparent U.S. softwood lumber consumption in the first six months of 2019 was 24.426 bbf, up 0.3% from 24.358 bbf in the same period a year ago. In the month of June, consumption was 4.008 bbf, down 5.1% from 4.225 bbf in June 2018, and 8.7% below output in May 2019 of 4.388 bbf.

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