Top of mind for economic analysts these days is the question of how rapidly prices (or costs, from a different perspective) are moving, and in what direction. The construction sector, mainly on the residential side, has been plagued much of this year by extraordinarily large climbs in prices for forestry products. July’s Producer Price Index (PPI) results from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show an abatement in this problem. Softwood lumber’s July PPI was -29.0% month to month and -16.3% over the latest three months. Nevertheless, it was ahead by a mighty +45.0% year over year; but in May, it had been +154% y/y.
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