COVID-19

In consideration of the health and wellbeing of our staff and in keeping with advice from health organisations, all employees are currently working from home. FWPA activities are functioning as per usual and we do not expect any major disruptions to our services. More information.

Latest Softwood Sales Forecasts Provide a Baseline

Latest Softwood Sales Forecasts Provide a Baseline

 

Quarterly forecasts of sawn softwood sales provide by ABARES are firmly based in sound theory. They draw on past actual data and deploy few, if any, assumptions. The quite firmly econometric forecasting tool delivers outputs that in times of crisis do not have the same validity as if they were deployed in times of stability.

The latest quarterly forecasts are in that vein. They do not pass the ‘sniff test’. Because they are methodologically rigorous, the forecasts presented here for the next four quarters are likely to miss the mark by big margins.

That is no criticism however, because these forecasts tell us what would likely have happened, in the absence of the pandemic and its impact. Store these away as the baseline forecast and examine them periodically to see just how much impact the pandemic has on sawn softwood sales.

While the details are below, the summary is set out here for the June Quarter.

 

Grade

March Quarter Actual (m3)

June Quarter Forecast (m3)

Treated Structural

155,172

161,108

Structural <120mm

172,290

184,086

Structural >120mm

12,945

13,517

Landscaping Products

23,890

25,500

Treated Structural

Actual sales in the March 2020 quarter (155,172 m3) were weaker than expected, falling below the forecast made in February 2020 (168,195 m3) by 7.7% or 13,022 m3. Actual sales volumes for the March 2020 quarter were still inside the 95% prediction interval for the previous four forecasts.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the June 2020 quarter onwards have been revised downwards. Sales are expected to rise in the June and September quarters of 2020 by 3.8% and 4.5% respectively, before falling by 5.4% in the December 2020 quarter. Sales are expected to rise 1.1% in the March quarter of 2021, finishing 4.0% or 6,223 m3 higher than the most recent quarter.

fig15

Fig.15

Structural less than 120mm

Actual sales in the March 2021 quarter (172,290 m3) were stronger than expected, exceeding the forecast of February 2020 (163,559 m3) by 5.3% or 8,730 m3.  Actual sales volumes for the March 2020 quarter were inside the 95% prediction intervals for the previous three forecasts.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the June 2020 quarter onwards have been revised upwards. Sales are forecast to rise in the June and September quarters of 2020 by 6.8% and 5.4% respectively, before falling by 12.6% and 4.1% in the December 2020 and March 20201 quarters respectively. Sales in the March 2021 quarter are expected to be around 5.6% or 9,733 m3 lower than the most recent quarter.

fig16Fig. 16

Structural greater than 120mm

Actual sales in the March 2020 quarter (12,945 m3) were stronger than expected, exceeding the forecast of February 2020 (11,850 m3) by 9.2% or 1,095 m3.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the June 2020 quarter onwards have been revised upwards. Sales are forecast to rise in the June and September quarters of 2020 by 4.4% and 4.9% respectively, before falling by 13.0% and 4.6% in the December 2020 and March 20201 quarters respectively. Sales in the March 2021 quarter are expected to be around 9.1% or 1,178 m3 lower than the most recent quarter.

fig17

Fig. 17

Landscaping products

Actual sales in the March 2020 quarter (23,890 m3) were weaker than expected, falling below the forecast of February 2020 (38,535 m3) by 16.3%, or 4,645 m3. Actual sales volumes for the March 2020 quarter were inside the 95% prediction interval for the previous four forecasts.

Looking forward, the updated forecasts for the June 2020 quarter onwards have been revised downwards. Sales are expected to rise over the next three quarters by 6.7%, 19.9% and 9.3% before falling in the March 2020 quarter by 18.8%. Sales in the March 2021 quarter are expected to be around 13.5% or 3,228 m3 higher than the most recent quarter.

 

fig.18

Fig. 18

 

FWPA Newsletters

FWPA regularly distributes industry updates and information through e-newsletters including ForWood, R&DWorks, Statistics Count and The Ultimate RenewableTM Partner Update. ForestLearning, our education program for teachers, educators and school children, also publishes a quarterly e-newsletter and ensures school communities and the public are informed on Australian forests and forest-based products.

Additionally, WoodSolutions publishes a newsletter that addresses design and build professionals – architects, building designers, engineers and others involved in specifying the choice of building materials.

For more information on our mailing lists or to subscribe click the link below.

Subscribe

R&D Works

ForWood

The Ultimate Renewable Partner Program

WoodSolutions

ForestLearning