Ash moved well in FAS/1F and #1 Common, with #2 Common less robust. European markets for FAS/1F Ash weren’t as busy as they had been earlier in the year, but increased shipments to other global destinations made up the difference.
Yellow Birch remained a tough sell, especially in the upper-grades. Sellers struggled to obtain orders for FAS/1F Cherry; no matter what the color sort, buyers were just not interested. #1 and #2 Common Cherry were fair movers. Green 4/4 and 5/4 Hard Maple prices continued to bump up, though some kiln-dried prices were still under downward pressure. Soft Maple moved well, especially the Sap/Btr 4/4 FAS/1F and 4/4 #1 Common.
“We are seeing new life in Red Oak,” noted one contact, echoing several others. 4/4 FAS/1F and 4/4 #2&3A Common were best sellers for Red Oak producers. Residential flooring plants were in the market for large volumes of 4/4 #2&3A Common Red Oak and White Oak. Combined demand for 4/4 #1 Common Red Oak from domestic, Chinese and Mexican buyers barely kept pace with production, and some mills still had blocks of unsold inventory. Supply and demand for FAS/1F White Oak were balanced at relatively low levels. 4/4 and 5/4 #1 Common White Oak moved quite well to the Far East.
Poplar producers were generally selling all they could make, and many were turning away orders for 4/4 for lack of supply. Walnut prices remained under downward pressure due mostly to weak domestic demand; Walnut exports were still fairly good.
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