The Commerce Department reported today that housing starts in August dropped 5 percent over July to an annual rate of 571,000 units. These starts represent the number of individual housing units that began construction in a given month. Last year, housing starts jumped 10.5 percent between July and August.
While the housing start news is not good, another figure released today gave some hope to the struggling national housing market. Building permit authorizations rose 3.2 percent over July to reach an annual rate of 620,000, the highest level since last December. Together, housing starts and building permits are looked to as leading indicators of the market’s direction.
From Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank on today’s news:
“Today’s housing report offers some positive, forward-looking news with a strong increase in housing permits. But as a whole, we know the market is volatile and struggling, which reinforces the urgent need to take action to put more people back to work.”
The full report from the Commerce Department is available here.
This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/housing_starts_drop_in_august_but_permits_increase/4187
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