Recent Updates

  • Indonesia: External Debt (May)
  • US: MTIS (May), Advance Retail Sales (Jun)
  • Jordan: Foreign Reserves (Jun)
  • Existing Home Sales (Jun)
  • US: Empire State Mfg Survey (Jul)
  • Brazil: Economic Activity (May)
  • France: France: Producer Cost Indices for Construction (Apr), Financing Access Survey (Q2)
  • China: NCI Economic Activity Index (Jul)
  • more updates...

Economy in Brief

U.S. Housing Starts and Building Permits Weaken
by Tom Moeller  March 16, 2018

Total housing starts in February declined 7.0% (-4.0% y/y) to 1.236 million (AR) from 1.329 million in January, revised from 1.326 million. A level of 1.290 million starts had been expected in the Action Economic Forecast Survey.

Starts of single-family homes increased 2.9% (2.9% y/y) to 902,000, the highest level in three months, from 877,000. Multi-family starts fell by 26.1% (-18.7% y/y) to 334,000 and reversed the January increase.

Movement in starts last month varied around the country. Housing starts in the West declined 12.9% to 339,000 following a 9.6% rise. Starts in the South fell 7.3% to 633,000 after a 15.0% increase. Starts in the Northeast eased 3.5% to 109,000 following a 28.4% jump. In the Midwest, starts increased 7.6% to 155,000, but remained down 30.2% from the December 2016 high..

Building permits declined 5.7% (+6.5% y/y) to 1.298 million and reversed January's gain. Single-family permits eased 0.6% (+4.6% y/y) to 872,000 after a similar decline in January. Permits to build multi-family homes dropped 14.8% (+10.6% y/y) to 426,000, after rising 19.3%.

The housing starts and permits figures can be found in Haver's USECON database. The expectations figure is contained in the AS1REPNA database.

Housing Starts (000s, SAAR) Feb Jan Dec Feb Y/Y % 2017 2016 2015
Total 1,236 1,329 1,207 -4.0 1,203 1,174 1,112
 Single-Family 902 877 847 2.9 849 782 715
 Multi-Family  334 452 360 -18.7 354 392 397
Starts By Region
 Northeast 109 113 88 -1.8 112 116 138
 Midwest 155 144 170 -14.8 179 182 153
 South 633 683 594 -3.8 599 585 556
 West 339 389 355 0.6 313 291 265
Building Permits 1,298 1,377 1,300 6.5 1,254 1,207 1,183
close
large image