Why the cost increase?

I went to buy materials for a speaker project. I also priced some T-111 siding on 8" centers, 5/8 thick, Ship lap.
I hadn’t picked up any sheets or anything in over 18 months.

48" x 96 x 5/8 wood siding was 19-26.00 and on sale 15-20.00 per sheet, NOW 74-84.00 per sheet.

MDF 3/4" 48 x 96" if you can find it. 45-55.00 per sheet it was 22.00 to 27.00 per sheet.

2x4x8 DF stud grade 1.99-3.00 per. Now 4-6.00 per stud,

There is no shortage but there sure is a LOT of price gouging. NOTHING changed. Just the price..

The quality is worse. The workers aren’t paid worth a crap...Why the increase?

I’m getting ready to finish my home out. WOW.. I might have to rethink this a bit..

The price all most tripled in 12-18 months.. This kind of stuff is NOT cool at ALL.

Just my opinion of course. Any projects you’re doing get put on hold or STOPED?

YES I’m very frugal. Money never came easy, and it leaves the same way..

They call it QE, quantitative easing, to obscure the fact they are printing trillions of dollars from nothing. No one understands money (I do, no one else here, that's for sure) so no one understands that it is counterfeit currency not even really money. But they are duped into thinking real money like bitcoin and gold are not. Hardly anyone even understands enough Econ 101 to know that any time you increase the supply of a good you decrease its value.

Of course it costs more dollars to buy stuff. They are worth so much less. Just the way it goes
This essay explains it very well:


Millercarbon ... You are one of the very few people I've met who understands the money issue. 

I’m in the residential design/build business. Lumber prices began skyrocketing a few month ago. Supposedly beginning to come down based on the futures market. But no, this has little to do with inflation in it’s pure form.

There are a lot/many of reasons for it, but I don’t talk to anyone who understands the primary reason why. That includes my lumber yard salesman who purchase wholesale. When a 2x4 goes from $2 to $10 ‘over night’ that is more than actual inflation, or QE. Personally, I think with the housing/remodeling boom, and the availability of cheap money, the wholesale folks got greedy. We have been incredibly busy over the last 9 months, and lumber costs haven’t stopped anyone from starting or following through on a project. So, why lower costs? Supply and demand allows it. When rates go back up, and they will, prices will drop. But right now, it isn’t stopping anyone as money is cheap, and some are taking full advantage.

I understand this, MY money doesn’t buy 1/2 what it did 18-24 months ago.. I understand you can’t just print money. I understand this government, no matter WHO is in office, continues to NOT pay the bills of the people sense Richard Nixon. I know the last balanced budget was proposed by Jimmy Carter.

I know the last time we had a FAKE surplus was when Clinton was in office. We went from an 11 trillion dollar FAKE surplus to what ever we are now.. STUPID STUPID STUPID in debt..

I barely trust Ran or Ron Paul. The ONLY ones close to my way of thinkin..

The only thing that didn’t go up was my house payment. It will be paid for in short order 6-8 month. And a rental or two. I kept the rents the same for 10 years. Same renters for the last 15 years.

My income is the same. I hate to pass it on to my renters.. Ones a car mechanic. I know he hasn’t seen a raise sense forever..

That’s what I know.. Thanks for the info, I’ll give it a good looking over.. BUT I see Greenspan. He was WAY off the mark.. From what I remember and still is. Da#n Idiot!!

A budget means you spend what you have

An Economy is dependent on what should come in, BUT greed always make people over spend what hasn't even been collected.

I say JAIL the Economist and anyone who doesn't support paying bills out of coffers, not projection.. That is the only problem I see.. No one we hire is held accountable, just like the last year of burning down 220 towns, looting towns.. NO one was held accountable. ZERO.. STILL going into stores and just having at it.. Looting is a punished on the site. It is one of a few capital offenses that can be carried out by any property owner. OR Law enforcement..

Jeez.. I’m just a common man. Making me think like this.. LOL

We had some construction done that was contracted prior to the big rise on lumber costs. Good timing! Contractor attributed the subsequant rise in lumber costs to high demand for home improvements due to the pandemic. He is very backlogged. Not enough workers that can do the work properly to keep up. It’s basic supply and demand magnified by a pandemic that keeps people at home.
Has anyone checked the price of gasoline, or meat, or eaten out at a restaurant lately? 

Of course we have. Listen, I’m no fan of the Fed, or our insane and crazy spending on a federal level (yes, if we keep doing that we will see similar cost increases on all products across the board), but, the lumber increase across the board happened almost literally ’overnight’. The beef industry wholesalers, as the lumber guys, seem to have a cartel on these prices, and can literally do as they desire if the market is there. Gas prices? Well, I don’t think it takes a genius to figure out why that is happening.

I study this stuff, believe me, especially after the housing crash that almost ‘killed me’ financially overnight, but this particular cost increase was so staggering quick nationwide that it goes beyond what would be expected by ‘actual’ inflation.

As example, we just ordered roof trusses for a job. We will have to wait 3 months to get them, minimum. It wasn’t even a year ago would would get those built and trucked to our site in 2-3 weeks max from date of order. Might give you a glimpse of what is happening. Same is happening to windows, cabinets, and many many other building supplies. Makes our job tough in keeping clients happy.
I drove back and forth to Montana from Southern Nevada recently. I saw train after train with Lumber heading south. I had put all my wood working project on hold for a few months when the prices went thru the roof. We shall see if the prices come down with the resupply.
Pay no attention to the economic town criers. This inflationary noise is just that. Noise. Some inflation is to be expected but it will be short lived and price gougers are always around to take advantage of it. Anyone notice how it's not across the board?

The comments you hear are just from opportunists inflaming the situation. Nothing more.

All the best,
Anyone notice house prices also taking a massive jump? Homes in NC and VT Zillowed at $400k going on the market for $600k - overnight. 
Oh, to answer your question: demand from an exponential growth in population. 
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I got an email this week from Cary Audio (in NC) saying that their prices were about to increase in a day or so--a lot of their products are on sale at the moment. They cited the same reasons that most other companies have stated. It's a real shame -- so get 'em while you can.
Somebody needs to pay for government expenditure. If they cannot take your wealth directly by way of taxes, inflation is the next best.

Economics 101.

In another 18 months those boards will be over $100 a pop.
Millercarbon ... You are one of the very few people I've met who understands the money issue.


Thanks. Unfortunately we now apparently live in a world where even indisputable facts are deemed too controversial for publication. The first post explained rising prices and was removed. Why?

They call it QE, quantitative easing, to obscure the fact they are printing trillions of dollars from nothing. No one studies this, so no one understands that it is counterfeit currency not even really money. But they are duped into thinking real money like bitcoin and gold are not. Hardly anyone even understands enough Econ 101 to know that any time you increase the supply of a good you decrease its value.

Of course it costs more dollars to buy stuff. They are worth so much less. Just the way it goes
Rising prices do not all rise uniformly nor smoothly across the board. This confuses people, but it makes perfect sense. Some things and some people like to buy on sale. Others like to buy when they see the price going up. Lots only buy after prices have been going up and up and up a long time. 

This happens with all kinds of things. This tendency can be exaggerated by the way things are priced.

Lumber and oil for example are priced on commodities exchanges where traders buy and sell contracts for future delivery. When they see a surge in building permits they predict a surge in lumber demand and bid up futures contract prices. 

This all sounds rather academic and out of touch, and it would be, except that people closer to the end user see this and react. I saw a YT video where a builder bought all the lumber he would need for a house he was building. Because he had to honor his bid, and with rising prices the only way is to buy it all now. So all that lumber came off the market, months before it was needed, exacerbating the price squeeze.

This is one example but this same thing ripples across the entire economy. The volatility is not all one direction either. The futures contracts on crude oil were so messed up that at one point crude was trading for negative dollars. That's right, you had to pay to get rid of your crude. Well there was a glut, to the point there was nowhere even to store it, and when you are paying $150k/day to keep a supertanker at anchor just to store your oil that's the way it goes.

What gets me is every single one of these things I just mentioned is absolutely true and verfiable. If it makes anyone uncomfortable to read the truth here's one last bit of advice: stop reading my posts.  https://youtu.be/9FnO3igOkOk?t=44
The simple fact is they are massively devaluing the money in your pocket. The poor get poorer.
It's less prices going up as it's the dough they let you have is yeastless manna.
"the dough they let you have is yeastless manna"

No you just have to invest it wisely to see it rise. It’s the only way to get ahead. All part of the game. Everybody play the game! The game of life.

Hint: Expensive audio gear and tweaks are a VERY BAD INVESTMENT so just enjoy them.
Many factors influence the price of consumer goods. Lots of examples given here. Enough blame to go around. Welcome to the Biden era.

When the government allows people to take a voluntary lay-off in the name of Covid fears, then boosts their unemployment to $4400/month, there are a lot of workers missing from the workforce. This includes the mill where they turn logs into lumber and plywood. Market forces kick in, supply and demand. This is especially obvious in any small lumberyard (other than the big chains and home centers), where there's only a fraction of the usual amount of stuff to buy, no matter how high the price.
They call it QE, quantitative easing, to obscure the fact they are printing trillions of dollars from nothing. No one studies this, so no one understands that it is counterfeit currency not even really money. But they are duped into thinking real money like bitcoin and gold are not. Hardly anyone even understands enough Econ 101 to know that any time you increase the supply of a good you decrease its value.
Uh, quantitative easing is the buying of US bonds, to get investors to invest in and spur the economy, and not the printing trillions of dollars. It's the earnings from the investments made that are put back into the economy by the Fed.

Lots of people study this and it was very easy to look up. The people who do study this are called economists.

All the best,
When the government allows people to take a voluntary lay-off in the name of Covid fears, then boosts their unemployment to $4400/month, there are a lot of workers missing from the workforce.
How does $300/wk work out to $4,400 a month?

Now who would delete an honest and simple link from a reputable business source about the true falling price of lumber?

Funny, that.
Just keep in mind that the solution to high prices is...high prices.

Demand will naturally subside and the the corollary will come into play:

The solution to low prices is...low prices.

As output and investment in plant and equipment drop -- go to step 1.

As an earlier poster noted, it's Econ 101 ... supply and demand,
It is 450.00 per week in CA. I've never drawn unemployment.

I did have to collect on a broken neck the last 4 years though. The only time I've ever had to use my EARNED benefits.

It cost me a LOT of money being injured. It didn't cost my employer a nickel AND he fired me..

BUT it did cost him his franchise. No one was qualified for the work... LOL they terminated his contract and sent ME an Email explaining why..
He owed 2 million in unpaid parts bills.. TRUE "Travelholic" 5-70k every 3 month.. Ruined a cool 1-1.2 million dollar profit per year business. It made over 12 million gross. To just paying some of the bills and 1-2 million in sales. So sad the addicts that screw people.
Gamblers cut from the same cloth. I've worked with TWO, that I knew of just horrible to see what a real gambler will do just to gamble..

I remember having to explain to a guys wife why he was being arrested.
I was a shop steward at the time.. Stealing company fuel by the thousands of gallons.. Gambler...

I'll take a drunk or heroin addict over either.. Most of my European counterparts were one or the other.. Tough being a HD mechanic. ;-)

When was the last time anyone saw a pay raise unless you work for the government OR the gouging bunch that's taking advantage of JOE American. Price increase? Surely not their workers.. JUST the sale price.

Home Depot or Lowes has NOT removed the "NOW Hiring" sign from in front of their store for 10 years..

I use a local lumber company when he has stock.. 

I'm going back to work.  Start organizing again!.. Need some Union order back in things.. I knew I saw Hoffa the other day.. Little rough around the edges, BUT He was born in 1913.. BIG stereo guy too.. LOL

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Oh BS, Hoffa was on one side, and Elvis on the other, of Marilyn Monroe.

JFK was in close third..

and no Paul in NOT dead.. :-)

Almost certainly a bubble caused by speculators.
All markets are like this - driven by greed on the upside.

Don't worry, as soon as one speculator thinks the price will fall, he will sell.  Other speculators will see he has sold and they will sell.  Soon they will all try to sell, driving the price below where it started.  Driven by fear on the downside.

If you want to play, the trick is to learn how to catch the falling knife.
@bkeske got it right and could have shortened his answer to just GREED.

Everyone is jumping on the rising prices bandwagon.

Many seem to be following the "never let a crisis go to waste" policy.
  • Hint: Expensive audio gear and tweaks are a VERY BAD INVESTMENT so just enjoy them.

If only I had stocked up on all of those garage sales Dyna ST 70s at 10 - 50 bucks a pop back in the early 80s. :-)

How does $300/wk work out to $4,400 a month?

It can when the fed adds $600 per week to a state's current unemployment benefits.
buck goes down don't you see?
too much money spent on that crazy WHOever engineer.
My understanding of this rise in lumber pricing has very little to do with the availability of raw lumber.  During Covid shutdowns mills were forced to close.  In many cases the worker bees scattered.  Restrictions are then lifted and not only have some workers fled the area but many others don't want to go back to the mills as they are being paid to sit home.

Then there is a question of a shortage of actual mills, you would expect that with rising prices it becomes a safe bet to build a new mill.  But, that costs 10s of millions and takes a long time.  Whomever is deciding not to build new infrastructure has the reasonable expectation that it won't pay off in the end as we really are in a bubble. 

Same with chicken and pork (my fav) pricing.  Asked my butcher and he
impatiently explained that there are plenty of pigs running around and few
processing plant workers to process them.

Notice the Orwellian \8-) reference (Animal Farm) above.

I crack myself up sometimes!


They’ll be back as soon as the money dries up but I wouldn’t hire a single one of them. Prices will come down a little but will never be back to where they were. Inflation will catch up with them.
The funny thing is, we are all being screwed. Left, right. Black, White. All of us. We should all be on the same team not fighting each other. As long as the politicians keep us at each others throats they and their benefactors have total control over us. The American middle class is dying and without it so goes the United States. International corporations could care less. The funny thing is, in the end, nobody will be able to afford their crap.
Covid seems to be a big factor behind recent inflation in general .  Business shut down or scaled back as people began staying home and demand decreased (along with the number of available workers).  More recently, consumer demand has picked up, but supply chains remain disrupted.  Low supply + increasing demand = higher prices.

As for lumber in particular, see:

Didn't read other responses but I am in the industry and represent companies in CE, Computing, Audio Video and all vendors have spoken to component increases across the board . Wood, Metal, Plastics, Chips,  Panels  all  have increases in prices.  Demand is outpacing supply in almost all cases due to sales as well as logiistics which i will get into in more detail.

There are also Tariffs that went into place that are still in place on certain goods out of China which have contributed to the increase.  I have had manufacturers raise 2 and 3 times during covid.  Some only once but none with no price increases.

Now to the logistics which is killing everyone.  Prior to covid I had vendors paying around $2,000 for a 40Ft container . During covid cost increased to $4,000 to $6,000 in the last two months containers went to $11,000- $15,000 and then in the last few weeks quotes are now $22,000 to $25,000 a container out of asia.  Lets say you can even get space on a ship.  The goods are sitting on the docks in asia for weeks before getting on the ship.  Then when they get here they sit off the cost for a few more weeks.  Then when they get to the docks they sit there for a few more and all of these delays have to do with lack of personal to move the product.  .   Now you are in the US with goods and logistics to move from the port to DCs has also skyrocketed.    Net net time and money has caused increases accross the industry and is also affecting all other industries as well.  Our vendors give you estimates with the caveat that it could swing up to a month

No one wants to talk about inflation but think about it,  Your grocery bill is at least 25% more , if you go to dinner meals are out of control.  Ok places charging $40 plus for an entree , high end places $60 plus.  Gas and oil prices which then seep into all goods made with petroleum products.  Lumber although has come down a bit was up 4 X cost.    Lots of products OOS on items you need to build.  Try to get a pool contractor these days they will tell you 2 years.  Cant even get the fence to put around the pool.

Crazy times and the expectations are Q4 will be horrible this year as majors are decommitting quantity of goods to major retail and only promising 45% of delivery.  Many manufacturers are caught trying to decide to build goods at a much higher cost and get stuck if prices normalize.  Others taking the risk and others just not building. 

Maybe back to normal next year
nonoise7,463 posts07-28-2021 8:43pm
When the government allows people to take a voluntary lay-off in the name of Covid fears, then boosts their unemployment to $4400/month, there are a lot of workers missing from the workforce.
How does $300/wk work out to $4,400 a month?

Maximum unemployment is $500/week, at least here in Oregon. The Federal add-on is another $600. That's how.
The GAO estimates that 40% of stimulus checks were used to pay down debt or saved in bank accounts.  Both of which stimulates nothing.

A friend in Boston was furloughed (company still paid health, life etc benefits) so technically not "laid off".  Friend still qualifies for Massachusetts unemployment at a staggering (to me) $800+ per week.
This same person also qualifies (just barely) for the $600 Fed program.
That's $1400+ a week or $5600 monthly or $72,000+ yearly!

Crazy times we live in.

Be patient; Covid put quite a dent in spending and income but this wasn't a case of a housing market collapse or other situation where the recovery will be slow, but a lot of companies laid off their workers who had to find employment elsewhere and couldn't afford to wait around until their former employers decided to hire people back.  It might have been ruinous for them but if they could've kept their workers even semi-employed they'd still have them to increase their hours; now they're running into delays trying to ramp up again without their experienced workers.  Out of employment benefits come payments for the crappy insurance you buy through the ACA plus the extra medical bills that come from such crappy insurance.  Most people don't want to be unemployed and be handed money, knowing that your temporary benefits are going to run out and most likely NOT at a good time.  For those of you out there working, I (like myself) would rather have the security and benefits that a steady job provides as opposed to a short-term unemployment payment.  A side thought: the businesses that are bemoaning that they can't hire enough workers at $12 an hour ($24,960/year, take 1/3 taxes/ins out leaves $16,623, $319 a week clear) with no benefits shouldn't be surprised that they can't compete with the extra money the unemployed are getting right now (which states are trying to pull to fund other things).  What could trip up the recovery is, the unvaccinated are causing spikes all over the US and could hose things up again for a bit longer.  You want this to go away faster? Get vaccinated and hound everyone around you to do so - so tired of hearing people moan about masks and quarantining who are part of the problem, and give the same bogus reasons for not getting it day after day as the medical experts (no, not something you read on Facebook from "some guy who seems pretty smart") explain again and again that what you've heard/read isn't true.

You did the classic "I don't like the guy so anything good he did must have been fake" bit. Sorry, but Clinton had 4 balanced budgets and even ran a surplus. It wasn't fake and he and Kasich deserve the credit. Just because Bush II came along and blew that out of the water by starting two wars doesn't mean Clinton doesn't deserve credit.
Supply and Demand with too many at home doing all those projects around the house that have been sitting there for ten or more years. 

I was talking with my hardwood supplier about this. I build furniture and very soon audio furniture. Madronetimbre.com. More about that later.

In any event, my hardwood supplier indicated plywood, MDF, oak and maple are going up in price.

Most of it is construction materials, however. Word to this large hardwood distributor is that the mills aren't working full shifts due to Covid concerns and a majority of employees in those industries refusing to get vaccinated. As such, the mills aren't letting the unvaxed in to get the rest of them sick. Most of these plants are located in the Southeast and aren't air conditioned. At the same time, they aren't all out in open space / air either. 

Hopefully by a year from now, this dilemma will be behind us. 
Three New Unemployment Programs Under the CARES ActProgramWhat it DoesFederal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC)Provides a federal benefit of $300 a week up to Sept. 6, 2021.*Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)Extends benefits to self-employed, freelancers, and independent contractors.

President Donald Trump on Sunday backed off his veto threat and signed the $900 billion stimulus bill—a move that should immediately benefit millions of unemployed Americans, even if its $600 checks have been roundly criticized as insufficient relief for the economic damage wrought by the coronavirus pandemic.

For starters, the package will bring back weekly enhanced federal unemployment benefits for the more than 19 million Americans still on unemployment benefit rolls. These enhanced benefits will pay out $300 per week, on top of state benefits, for up to 11 weeks. That’s down from the $600 weekly payment that the CARES Act sent jobless Americans through late July.

There was only 4 months of $600 UI. The rest was $300 until now.
Gotta love all the fuzzy math. But hey, how ’bout 85% of CARES money going to corporations who use it to buy back stock to increase their shares values so when they leave, they can cash out on the highest rate? They didn’t even qualify for the aid!

Others gave themselves bonuses and still laid off employees when they didn’t have to. And, a lot of those companies didn’t qualify for the money but "informed" there favorite politicians to simply give it to them. They were given a heads up as the bill was being written so as to be the first to apply and crowded out the small business owners that were to be the actual recipients of the aid.

Knowing how to bilk taxpayers is their specialty and they were the first to line up to the trough for the money. That money was supposed to help small companies retain employees by making the workplace safer and keeping companies afloat during shutdown when they couldn’t feasibly do it.

Why, oh why, do they always pick on the workers?

All the best,
Be patient; Covid

Right. This is why the price of a bushel of corn was flat for over 200 years from 1650 well into the 1800's, but has climbed inexorably higher ever since 1913, and in particular since 1971.  

The Federal Reserve and the income tax were both created in 1913. Nixon took the US off the gold standard in 1971.  

Be patient; Covid. Hilarious.