22 June 2021

Shoulda bought plywood...

In early 2020, I decided to invest more money in Target as a pandemic-resistant stock.  And I stayed with it, which is fine.  But... I should have sold my TGT and moved the funds into a few truckloads of plywood.  Last week I was talking to a neighbor who is a building contractor.  He told me that sheets of plywood were costing him $75 vs. $25 about a year ago.

I found confirmation at Politifact
"...there are indications that the price of plywood has risen in the range of 252%.  Shawn Church, editor of Random Lengths, which publishes price data on the wood products industry, gave us figures for 23/32-inch plywood produced in the Pacific Northwest and the South. 

The price in the Northwest for Fir 23/32-inch sheathing for the first week of April was $1,610 per thousand square feet, up 287% from $560 a year earlier.

In the South, the price of that panel was $1,500 per thousand square feet, up 230% from $455 one year ago..."
- and at an Oregon news site:
The director of purchasing and finance with Renaissance Homes, Marc Hartman, said last January it cost him about $8 for a sheet of plywood. Today, that price is closer to the mid-$40 range. In some cases, it’s costing $20,000-$25,000 dollars or more to build a home with just the high cost of plywood alone.
- and Woodworking Network says thieves are now targeting truckloads of lumber:
Two more lumber robberies have been reported in late May.  The first took place at Timber Creek Community, a neighborhood currently being built in Fort Myers, Florida. 144 sheets of plywood - valued at around $10,000 - were stolen on May 21.,, The second incident took place at a construction site in Denver, where thieves reportedly stole $5,000 worth of lumber.  “Seven months ago, that was probably worth $1,500 and they probably wouldn’t want to steal it..." 
Note there is also a rising risk for landowners who have woodlots.


  1. "Good news, homebuilders and DIYers: Lumber enters a bear market with prices down 20% from their peak"

    The peak was on May 28.

    From: https://fortune.com/2021/06/16/lumber-prices-falling-2021-chart-update-price-of-lumber-going-down-wood-costs/

  2. Latest news - lumber futures are down.

  3. From the research I've done (and I admit, it wasn't really that much), this seems to be a definite case of artificial scarcity to drive up the prices, as suppliers are choosing to sit on their stocks.

  4. I just came back from up-state NH and I-93 is full of truckloads of lumber coming south from Canada so the prices may start to come down.


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