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ARE LUMBER PRICES FORECASTING A MARKET DOWNTURN?

As we’ve often mentioned, seasonality in housing remains one of the primary reason why the real estate market appears to be bottoming out.  Lumber prices are up 20%+ since the S&P 500 bottomed in March, but still down nearly 50% from their peaks.  As you can see in the following chart lumber prices have coincided with seasonal strength and weakness in the first and second halves of each of the last 3 years.  Prices are down almost 20% in the last 6 weeks as seasonality again begins to impose its will on the housing market.  Are lumber prices foreshadowing the next downturn in the real estate market?

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