Weyerhaeuser Co. announced today even more mill closings, this time involving iLevel lumber mills in Wright City, Okla., and Dallas, Ore., effective immediately. The actions bring to 10 the number of wood products manufacturing facilities closed this year and are part of an effort to take roughly 1.1. billion board feet of lumber out of production.
"Demand for wood products continues to decline due to a slowdown in the housing market," Tom Gideon, executive vice president, Forest Products, said of the latest announcement, which will affect 307 employees. "Unfortunately, extraordinarily weak market conditions in the homebuilding industry require that we take decisive action."
The news comes just a week after Weyehaeuser said it will indefinitely close its iLevel veneer and engineered wood mills in Evergreen, Ala., and Dodson and Simsboro, La., and its TimberStrand mill in Chavies, Ky. The company also announced the permanent closure of iLevel service centers in Albuquerque, N.M.; Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio; and Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada. That news followed announcements in January and February that the timber giant would indefinitely close its iLevel veneer and lumber mills in Pine Hill, Ala., and shut down a sawmill and a veneer mill in Aberdeen, Wash.
On Feb. 6, Weyerhaeuser reported a net loss of $1.212 billion for the fourth quarter of 2008 versus a loss of just $63 million in the year-earlier quarter. Net sales from continuing operations totaled $1.8 billion in the fourth quarter against $2.5 billion in the final three months of 2007. For the full year 2008, Weyerhaeuser reported a net loss of $1.18 billion on net sales from continuing operations of $8 billion. This compares with net earnings of $790 million on net sales from continuing operations of $10.8 billion for 2007.