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Wisconsin Building Supply is a destination for industry insight and a marketplace for valuable products at discounted prices.

Please remember, item availability is not guaranteed. All sales are final. Upon request, purchased items can be transferred to the WBS location nearest you. For additional information on any of the items listed, please contact the WBS location carrying the item/s.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Lumber Prices Repeat Patterns of Previous Weeks

March 2010--The Framing Lumber Composite Price repeated the pattern of previous weeks with a quiet start followed by a pickup Wednesday and Thursday. Strength in the May futures contract, buyers' fading hopes for a near-term market correction and those who had immediate needs to fill but simply ran out of time contributed to the gain. The limited availability due to drawn down mill production remains a defining issue of the market. The Composite price rose 2% this week and is 66% higher than last year.

The Panel Composite rose 4% this week with 7/16" OSB in the North Central region up 7% this week. The Panel Composite is up 46% over last year and 7/16" is up 65% over last year. Please remember to check your quotes before signing contracts with your customers. We honor quotes for 30 days as a standard and can work with you on extended pricing if needed.

Where do these gains put us in context to previous years? As many of you know, we run a list of materials each month for the framing materials needed for a typical two story. This gives us a snapshot as to how the market is impacting street pricing. In March the cost has risen 4.07% over February which was 4.06% up over January. March's pricing is similar to where pricing was in November of 2008. It is still 33% lower than the highest point in September of 2004.

January housing numbers across the nation showed a decline of 2.1 % for sales of existing homes. However, the Wisconsin markets showed a gain of 31% year over year during the same period.

New federal legislation takes effect this month. On or after April 22, 2010, firms working in pre-1978 homes or child occupied facilities must be certified and use lead-safe work practices during renovations. For more information about this "Renovation, Repair and Painting" rule check with your local code officials or visit the EPA website at It's the law!

Please be careful about road restrictions. Plan your loads and allow extra time for deliveries. We will send out more information as the restrictions are eased.