Home Depot Believes Lumber Prices Will Continue To Fluctuate

By Al Brown, The Chicago Times

February 22, 2022

ATLANTA — Home Depot holds firm that lumber prices will continue to fluctuate for the foreseeable future.

According to incoming CEO Ted Decker, “When lumber hit those extraordinary highs in the early part of last year, we saw a dramatic unit productivity fall off, and then we also saw a very quick fall off in lumber prices.  As lumber prices have recovered through this quarter, we are starting to see some unit pressure on lumber.”

In an earning call with analysts, Decker believes prices for framing lumber in the fourth quarter could range in price from $590 to over $1,200 per thousand board feet, which is an increase of more than 100%.

Wall Street’s reaction to the news, along with other events, saw Home Depot stock finish down nearly 9% at the end of Tuesday’s trading session.  The price dip ignored the fact that Home Depot just reported a strong sale in the recent quarter.

Fourth-quarter sales increased $3.5 billion to $35.7 billion.  The increase in sales helped Home Depot post a quarterly net profit of $3.4 billion, or $3.21 per share.  However, customer transactions for the quarter fell to 402.5 million from 416.8 million a year ago.  Inflation in the price of lumber and other building materials pushed the average ticket transactions to $85.11, compared to $75.69 a year ago.