Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Housing starts up big; permits fall

U.S. housing starts were up 15% from August to September:
Housing starts rose 15 percent, or a seasonally adjusted rate of 658,000. That blew away analysts' forecasts of an increase to a 590,000-unit rate.

Starts surged in September at their fastest annual pace in 17 months on a big increase in groundbreaking for multi-family units, while permits for future construction fell.

Building permits dropped 5 percent to 594,000.

Housing starts for buildings with two or more units rose 51.3 percent to a 233,000-unit rate. Single-family home construction — which accounts for a larger share of the market — increased 1.7 percent to a 425,000-unit pace.
Economists look to both housing starts and building permits as leading indicators, but building permits forecast further ahead than housing starts do.

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