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Weyerhaeuser Says Market Weak, May Close Plants

Weyerhaeuser, one of the world's largest paper and lumber companies, said Monday that it would probably have to close plants and restrict operations because of weak market conditions.

Weyerhaeuser said in a U.S. regulatory filing that the market for wood products has not improved in the third quarter and would probably result in closures, curtailments and restricted operations at its wood products facilities.

However, the forest products company said that markets in cellulose fibers, container board, packaging and recycling have continued to improve.

Last month, the company posted an 11 percent decline from a year earlier in second-quarter sales and said the weak U.S. housing market had hurt prices at its wood products business.

Weyerhaeuser had said at the time it expected its wood products business, which contributes about 36 percent of the company's revenue, would post a smaller loss in the current quarter than the $123 million loss in the second quarter, as prices for oriented strand board and cost decreases offset weakness for softwood lumber and engineered wood products.

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