This month’s TOP 5 from FWPA indicates softwood timber sales for Australian processors have remained steady during the past 12 months while imports of structural softwood have increased significantly. This is all against a backdrop of record residential housing approvals. This would suggest either local processors are at peak production based or there maybe some competitive issues at the margin. Furthermore, in the absence of inventory data it is unclear if the market has grown or stocks are building.
Top 5 Statistics
(Imports 4407.10 softwood sawntimber year end May 2015 a 24% increase over the year-ending May 2014)
(total home lending month May 2015 net of refinancing seasonally adjusted a reduction of 4.6% on the previous month)
(Residential dwelling approvals Year-ending May 2015 seasonally adjusted, an increase of 13.1% over the Year-ending May, 2014)
Sawn Softwood Sales Stability Surprises Some
After a year of sustained growth, strength and commentary about booming residential dwelling approvals, sales of sawn softwood have barely moved for the year ended May 2015, compared with 2014. At 2.656 million m3, to the end of May, recorded sales were just 0.5% higher than the 2.643 million m3 recorded for the year ended May 2014.