Paper Shipments Down Again

Paper shipments in the U.S. are down again.

Doc hates to be the bearer of bad news, but paper shipments in the U.S. are down again for the month of August.

According to the American Forest & Paper Association's August 2011 Printing-Writing Paper Report, total printing-writing paper shipments decreased 6.4% in August compared to August 2010. All four major printing-writing grades posted decreases compared to last August. U.S. purchases (shipments + imports – exports) of printing-writing papers decreased 10% in August. Total printing-writing paper inventory levels decreased 4% compared to July 2011.

Some points of interest from the report include:

  • July exports of uncoated free sheet (UFS) increased year-over-year for the fifth straight month.

  • Shipments of coated free sheet (CFS) decreased year-over-year for the ninth consecutive month.

  • Coated mechanical (CM) purchases decreased year-over-year for the fifth consecutive month.

  • Uncoated mechanical (UM) shipments decreased year-over-year for the fifth consecutive month following 15 consecutive months of year-over-year increases.

Doc has learned one hard and fast rule – when paper shipments are down, business is down. Let's hope next month's figures look a little better.