<span style="font-size: xx-small;">Home construction firm Beazer says homebuyer are increasingly interested in features in their home that are economically and ecologically beneficial. It introduced three progressive levels of green homes – eSMART, eSMART Plus and eSMART Green designed to reduce energy usage, conserve water and improve indoor air quality. Eco-friendly offerings provide a differentiator in the homebuilding market, Beazer says.</span>
<span style="font-size: xx-small;">Home construction firm Beazer says homebuyer are increasingly interested in features in their home that are economically and ecologically beneficial. It introduced three progressive levels of green homes – eSMART, eSMART Plus and eSMART Green designed to reduce energy usage, conserve water and improve indoor air quality. Eco-friendly offerings provide a differentiator in the homebuilding market, Beazer says.</span>

Furniture, cabinetry, flooring, window, door and millwork firms could be poised to gain as the housing market, and the economy, shows signs of life.

The Dow Jones average spiked 337 points this week, on news that housing starts had improved. Housing permits rose to 685,000 in November 2011, the Commerce Department reported, the highest number in 19 months, and 24.3% ahead of November 2010.

November 2011 permit applications rose 5.7% over October, to 681,000. Multi-unit construction starts, which account for 35 percent of the housing market, jumped 25.3%. Single family homes, the bulk of the residential market, rose 2.3%.

The rise in the market drove one-day jumps in stocks of homebuilders - Beazer Homes rose 15 percent; KB Homes and Pulte rose 10 percent - while cabinetry firms rose steadily all week. On Thursday alone, Masco was up 2%, American Woodmark rose 7% and Fortune Brands (MasterBrand Cabinets) rose 1.5%.

In addition to the great news on housing,  the most viewed wood industry articles from the past week indicated wood companies are still right-sizing production to match demand, but the trend seems to be toward fine-tuning rather than slash and burn tactics.

 

American Woodmark Closing Two Plants
By Bill Esler | Updated: 12/15/2011 6:00:00 AM
After kitchen and bath cabinetry maker American Woodmark Corp. (NASDAQ: AMWD) said it will close two manufacturing plants and sell another as a result of the ongoing housing slump, local officials reached out to save the Hardy County, WV cabinetry plant, built 10 years ago.

 Rep. Bill Huizenga

Legislation To Limit Prison-made Furniture Sales
By Karen Koenig | Updated: 12/16/2011 11:00:00 AM
Legislation was introduced this month to further limit the scope of office furniture and other products that can be sold by Unicor, a government-owned corporation that employs federal prisoners.
Read more

 Lumber pricing and sales

Hardwood Sawmills Cut in Half
By Andy Johnson | Updated: 12/15/2011 12:56:00 PM
By some estimates the hardwood industry has lost thousands of small-sized mills along with similarly sized end-users; the population may have been cut in half.
Read more

 California Redwood

Layoffs at Sierra Pine and California Redwood Company
By Bill Esler & Rich Christianson Updated: 12/14/2011 5:35:00 PM
California Redwood Company, Arcata, CA announced layoffs last month, and Sierra Pine, Roseville, CA, let employees go Dec. 16.
Read more


 Foliot Furniture logo

Foliot Ceases Manufacturing at TN Furniture Plant
By Karen Koenig | Updated: 12/19/2011 11:34:00 AM
Foliot Furniture announced it will move the manufacturing of its contract furniture seating line from Greeneville, TN, to its plants in Las Vegas, NV, and St. Jerome, QUE.
Read more

 Pomoona Wood Door fire

Wood Plant Fire Forces Evacuation

By Rich Christianson | Updated: 12/14/2011 1:09:00 PM
POMONA, CA -- A fire that destroyed a woodworking plant on Tuesday, prompted the evacuation of a neighboring strip club.  Read more


Gary George Opens Furniture Plant in High Point
By Karen Koenig | Updated: 12/19/2011 9:17:00 AM
Gary George Designs Inc. will open a new manufacturing facility in High Point, NC, for production of its upholstered furniture for the residential, contract and hospitality markets. Between 25-30 new jobs are expected to be added. Read more

 IP, Temple-Inland logos

Temple-Inland Stockholders Approve International Paper Merger

By Rich Christianson Updated: 12/14/2011 12:38:00 PM
International Paper will soon be back in the composite panel business following the overwhelming approval of a merger agreement by Temple-Inland stockholders. Read more

 

Clemment Cabinetry Acquired by Business Furniture Dealer
By Bill Esler | Updated: 12/17/2011 12:12:00 PM
Custom wood cabinet firm Clemment Cabinetry has been acquired by Wynn O. Jones an industrial furnishings dealer in Schofield, WI. Read more

 

IKEA Swedwood, Union Ratify Contract
By Karen Koenig | Updated: 12/21/2011 9:47:00 AM
Union workers at the Swedwood factory in Danville, VA, have approved a three-year contract with the IKEA furniture manufacturing plant. It is the group’s first collective bargaining agreement and is expected to go into effect upon signing. Read more

Read the latest wood industry news>>

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