Pine Sawtimber and Pulpwood Prices Continued to Improve in Eastern North Carolina

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After reaching an 11-year high in the last month, U.S. housing starts plunged in June 2018. Privately-owned housing starts in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million units, 12.3% lower than the May estimate and 4.2% below the rate of a year ago. Compared to May 2018, single-family housing starts were down 9.1%, and multi-family starts dropped 19.8% in June 2018.

In the second quarter of 2018, south-wide average stumpage prices followed the downward trend of the U.S. residential construction. South-wide average stumpage prices were down quarter-over-quarter for all pine and hardwood timber products. Dropping stumpage prices in the second quarter is a recent seasonal tendency in the timber markets. On the other hand, both Southern pine and hardwood lumber prices were up in this quarter. The price of Southern pine lumber was $557 per thousand board feet, up 16% from last quarter.

Recent trends in pine pulpwood prices in North Carolina chart image

Recent trends in pine pulpwood prices in North Carolina

Pine sawtimber and pulpwood prices continued to climb up in Eastern North Carolina, in contrast to both downward trends in housing starts and south-wide average timber prices, According to TimberMart-South, the average pine sawtimber price was $28.07 per ton, up slightly from last quarter and up 3.5% from the price a year ago. The pine pulpwood price in Eastern North Carolina averaged $14.78 per ton, the second best pulpwood price in the U.S. South, just behind the Eastern Florida pulpwood price. The hardwood sawtimber price also increased slightly to the state-wide average of $24.6 per ton. Both pine Chip-N-Saw and hardwood pulpwood prices in North Carolina, however, dropped in this quarter. For more information on the 2018 second quarter stumpage prices in North Carolina, please visit: Timber Price Data.