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Oct 27, 2021

West Fraser sees big gain in Q3 from Norbord addition

West Fraser Timber expands in U.S. again, stock hits record high

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VANCOUVER -- West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. says the addition of Norbord increased its third-quarter results from a year ago but B.C. wildfires and lower lumber prices contributed to a weakening from the second quarter.

The Vancouver-based lumber, oriented strand board and paper manufacturer says it earned US$460 million or US$4.20 per diluted share for the three months ended Sept. 30.

That's up from US$262 million or US$3.82 per share in the third quarter of 2020, but down from US$1.45 billion or US$12.32 per share in the prior quarter.

Sales nearly doubled to US$2.36 billion from US$1.27 billion, but were down 37.6 per cent from the second quarter.

The company says wildfires slowed orders for forest products while output was reduced due to the availability of resins for panel products, transportation interruptions and inventory levels.

About 869,000 hectares of area were burned from wildfires in British Columbia in the second and third quarters, trailing only the provincial area lost from wildfires in 2017 and 2018.

“Despite a number of challenges, the third quarter of 2021 was one of West Fraser's strongest quarter ever,'' stated CEO Ray Ferris.

“We operated responsibly across the business, managing the complexities of transportation and mill disruptions in the face of higher duties and B.C. stumpage and softer demand in a cyclical commodity environment.''