The Globe and Mail reports in its Wednesday edition that Raymond James analyst Daryl Swetlishoff upgraded West Fraser Timber to "strong buy" from "outperform" with an unchanged share target of $80. The Globe's David Leeder writes in the Eye On Equities column that analysts on average target the shares at $66.50. Mr. Swetlishoff feels below-cost commodity pricing in the building materials sector is "unsustainable," pointing to "encouraging" U.S. home-building data and commentary as well as "material" curtailment-related shipment declines. Accordingly, expecting pricing to trend higher in the coming quarters, Mr. Swetlishoff says it is "time to buy the trees again." He says in a note: "What's more, this favourable supply/demand dynamic is coinciding with seasonally advantageous timing. Building materials stocks are 80-per-cent correlated with commodity prices; essentially treading water since we downgraded select names on July 16, 2019. Share prices continue to discount below-cash-cost commodity pricing, which we view as unsustainable. Building materials stocks are trading in value territory, discounting below cash cost pricing. We have an encouraging near-term outlook given improving demand/supply fundamentals."
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