Lumber prices are rising again this fall after a sharp summer-long decline, prompted short-term by Hurricane Florence and longer-term by supply shortages amid rising demand.

A senior lumber buyer with 28 years of experience says that if the hurricane-driven rise in Southern yellow pine prices that he's seeing now follows past patterns, prices will rise about 10% and last at that higher level roughly two months. That's because hurricanes don't just shut down mills; they also cause people to skip work as they repair their own homes and lead to new orders for mills in unaffected areas--assuming they have the ability to increase capacity.

This week's rise comes after a summer in which, according to Random Lengths, prices for framing lumber fell from this year's peak of $582 per thousand board-feet to $440 on Aug. 10, and then have bumped up to $453 as of Sept. 7. If recent years are a guide, those prices won't be that low again for the rest of this year.

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