Sales beat forecasts in June quarter: sawn softwood

Sales beat forecasts in June quarter: sawn softwood

Sawn softwood sales in the June quarter were higher than forecast for all of the grades for which forecasts are prepared by ABARES, for FWPA. Underscoring the challenges of forecasting in the current era, ABARES has forecast three of the four grades will experience increased sales in the September quarter, with more variable results in subsequent quarters.

Treated Structural

Actual sales in the June 2020 quarter (166,730 m3) were stronger than expected, exceeding the May 2020 forecast (161,108 m3) by 3.5% or 5,622 m3. Actual sales for the June 2020 quarter were still inside the 95% prediction interval for the previous four forecasts.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the September 2020 quarter onwards have been revised upwards. Sales are expected to rise in the September quarter of 2020 by 1.4% before falling in the December quarter by 2.4%. Sales are then expected to rise in the first two quarters of 2021 by 1.7% and 3.3% respectively, finishing 4.0% or 6,659 m3 higher than the most recent quarter.

Fig 10

Structural less than 120mm

Actual sales in the June 2020 quarter (176,466 m3) were weaker than expected, falling below the May 2020 forecast (184,086 m3) by 4.1% or 7,619 m3.  Actual sales for the June 2020 quarter were inside the 95% prediction intervals for the previous three forecasts.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the September 2020 quarter onwards have been revised downwards. Sales are forecast to rise in the September quarter of 2020 by 0.8% before falling in the subsequent two quarters by 8.6% and 1.7% respectively. Sales are then expected to rise in June quarter of 2021 by 6.4%, finishing 3.7% or 6,499 m3 lower than the most recent quarter.

Fig 11

Structural greater than 120mm

Actual sales in the June 2020 quarter (14,168 m3) were stronger than expected, exceeding the May 2020 forecast (13,517 m3) by 4.8% or 651 m3. 

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the September 2020 quarter onwards have been revised upwards. Sales are forecast to fall over the next three quarters by 4.1%, 9.0% and 2.1% before rising in the June quarter of 2021 by 6.0%. Sales in the June quarter of 2021 are expected to be around 9.5% or 1,341 m3 lower than the most recent quarter.

 

Fig 12 

Landscaping products

Actual sales in the June 2020 quarter (37,295 m3) were stronger than expected, exceeding the May 2020 forecast (25,500 m3) by 46.3%, or 11,795 m3. Actual sales for the June 2020 quarter were outside the 95% prediction interval for the previous forecast.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the September 2020 quarter onwards have been revised upwards. Sales are expected to rise in the September and December quarters of 2020 by 8.7% and 10.6% respectively, before falling in the March quarter of 2021 by 21.0%. Sales are then expected to rise in the June quarter of 2021 by 7.3%, finishing 1.9% or 703 m3 higher than the most recent quarter.

Fig 13