September Housing Starts Drop 9%

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The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development reported Tuesday morning that new housing starts in September dipped to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.047 million. That was a decrease of 9% from the upwardly revised August rate of 1.152 million and a decrease of 11.9% compared with the September 2015 rate of 1.132 million. The consensus estimate from a survey of economists expected a rate of around 1.18 million.

The revision to the August rate added 10,000 new housing starts from the previously reported total.

The seasonally adjusted rate of new building permits rose in September to 1.225 million, up 6.3% from the upwardly revised August rate of 1.152 million and 8.5% above the September 2015 rate of 1.166 million. The consensus estimate called for 1.17 million new building permits.

Single-family housing starts rose in September to an annualized rate of 783,000, up 8.1% from the revised August rate of 724,000. Single-family starts rose more than 5% year over year in September.

Permits for new single-family homes rose 0.4% month over month in September, to an adjusted annual rate of 739,000, from a revised total of 736,000 in August. The rate rose 4.4% year over year.

Multi-family starts for buildings with five or more units rose by 12.9% year over year in September and fell by 0.8% compared with August.