Sawtimber Prices in North Carolina Increased Substantially in the Second Quarter, 2021

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In the second quarter of 2021, both housing and lumber markets started plummeting from the record high levels. In May 2021, US housing starts were down about 3% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about 1.68 million units, which is still about 35% up from last year. The lumber markets also started dropping significantly in the last few weeks. The Forest2Market’s southern yellow pine (SYP) lumber price index on July 2, 2021 was $566 per thousand board feet, down 53% from the record high in mid-May, 2021.

In the second quarter of 2021, while both pine and hardwood sawtimber prices rose considerably, both pine and hardwood pulpwood prices were down in North Carolina. According to TimberMart-South, the state-wide average pine sawtimber prices in 2021 Q2 were about $30.5/ton, up 22% from last quarter and up 31% from the price a year ago. It was about 20% above the south-wide average pine sawtimber prices. The pine sawtimber prices in eastern North Carolina surged 30% up to $35/ton in this quarter. Similarly, statewide average pine chip-n-saw prices were $17.1 per ton, up 8.2% from last quarter and up 14% from 2020 Q2.

In this quarter, the state-wide average pine pulpwood price dropped to $9.4/ton, which were down 18% from last quarter but up 3.5% from 2020 Q2. The eastern North Carolina had even a higher drop in pine pulpwood prices to an average of about $11.5/ton.

The statewide mixed hardwood sawtimber prices averaged at $30 per ton in this quarter, up 18% from last quarter and up 23% from the price a year ago. It was still about 15% less than the south-wide average of hardwood sawtimber prices. However, hardwood pulpwood prices trended downward to the state-wide average of $6.2 per ton, down 21% from the last quarter, and down 4.4% from the price a year ago. For more information on the 2021 second quarter stumpage prices in North Carolina, please visit Forestry Price Data.

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