May 3, 2011 / 9:50 PM / 7 years ago

REFILE-UPDATE 2-West Fraser Q1 dips on weak lumber demand

* Q1 EPS from cont ops C$0.46 vs C$0.89 a year ago

* Q1 Rev down slightly to C$687 mln

* Sees volatility in product prices until U.S. housing industry recovers (Refiles to fix typo in company name in para 4)

May 3 (Reuters) - West Fraser Timber Co Ltd posted a lower quarterly profit on Tuesday, hurt by weak demand for lumber and a stronger Canadian dollar.

North America’s largest softwood producer posted earnings from continued operations of C$20 million, or 46 Canadian cents a share, compared with C$38 million, or 89 Canadian cents a share.

Sales in the quarter dropped slightly to C$687 million, from C$688 million a year earlier, hurt by lower Spruce-Pine-Fir (SPF) lumber shipments as poor weather conditions affected truck and railcar availability.

West Fraser said SPF and Southern Yellow Pine lumber prices have weakened since the end of the first quarter of 2011 and prices for its construction products are expected to remain volatile until the U.S. housing industry experiences sustainable recovery.

Shares of the Vancouver-based company, which has operations in Western Canada and the U.S. South, closed at C$53.85 on Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Amruta Sabnis in Bangalore; Editing by Prem Udayabhanu)

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