West Fraser Timber's 2Q 2022 sales were $2.887 billion, compared to $3.110 billion in the 1Q 2022. 2Q earnings were $762 million, or $7.59 per diluted share, compared to $1,090 million, or $10.25 per diluted share in the 1Q 2022. 2Q Adjusted EBITDA1 was $1,124 million compared to $1,592 million in the 1Q 2022.
“West Fraser generated strong financial results again in the 2Q 2022, supporting the return of more than $1.5 billion of capital to shareholders through share repurchases and our quarterly dividend,” said Ray Ferris, West Fraser’s President & CEO. “The acute transportation challenges facing the company in recent quarters showed signs of improvement in the second quarter, in large part because of the dedication and determination of our people. Even so, our ability to ship products in a timely manner to meet the demands of our customers is not where it needs to be and therefore transportation and logistics remain key focus areas for the company. Inflationary cost pressures persist across our various supply chains, although an environment of strong demand and above-average product pricing has helped to absorb most of these cost increases. And while we recognize the risks of near-term macro headwinds, including rising mortgage rates and elevated energy prices, we also note that demand for our products has been resilient, and we continue to see favourable long-term market fundamentals in support of our wood building products business.”
“Several key trends that have served as positive drivers in recent years are expected to continue to support medium- and longer-term demand for new home construction in North America.
The most significant uses for our North America lumber, OSB and wood panel products are residential construction, repair and remodelling and industrial applications. Over the medium-term, we expect that an aging housing stock, lagging completions of previously started new home construction and greater acceptance of work-from-home practices may offset near-term headwinds and drive repair and renovation spending that supports lumber, plywood and OSB demand. Over the longer-term, growing market penetration of mass timber in industrial and commercial applications is also expected to become a more significant demand growth driver for wood building products in North America.
The seasonally adjusted annualized rate of U.S. housing starts averaged 1.56 million units in June 2022, with permits issued averaging 1.69 million units, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. However, demand for new home construction and for our wood building products may be reduced in the near-term should interest rates continue to rise and consumer sentiment and housing affordability continue to be impacted.
The demand for our European products is also expected to remain robust over the longer-term as use of OSB as an alternative to plywood continues to grow, and an aging housing stock supports long-term repair and renovation spending and additional demand for our wood building products. While near-term challenges, including rising interest rates, ongoing geopolitical developments and inflationary pressures akin to those we are seeing in North America may cause a temporary slowing of demand for our products in Europe, we are confident that we will be able to navigate through these periods and capitalize on opportunities for long-term growth ahead,” the Company said in the press release.
West Fraser is a diversified wood products company with more than 60 facilities in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Europe.