Recent Updates

  • UK: National Insurance Number Allocations (Q3), Capital Issuance, Motor Vehicle Production, Average Precipitation (Oct), BoE Balance Sheets (Nov)
  • Russia: Nonresident Holdings of Government Debt (Oct)
  • Belarus: New Hires and Terminations (Oct)
  • more updates...

Economy in Brief

U.S. Housing Starts Rebound in September
by Tom Moeller  October 20, 2020

• Single-family home building increases to highest level since June 2007.

• Permits to build single-family units jump, while multi-family permits drop.

Housing starts rose 1.9% (11.1% y/y) in September to 1.415 million units (SAAR) from 1.388 million in August, revised from 1.416 million. The increase left starts 12.5% below their January peak of 1.617 million. The Action Economics Forecast Survey expected 1.450 million starts in September.

Starts of single-family homes rose 8.5% last month (22.3% y/y) to 1.108 million from an unrevised 1.021 million in August and 992,000 in July, revised from 981,000. The latest level was roughly two-thirds above the April low. Offsetting the increase was a 16.3% decline (-16.6% y/y) in multi-family starts to 307,000 units from 367,000 in August, revised from 395,000. It was the lowest level of multi-family start in five months and down 51.1% from the peak this past January.

Building permits rose 5.2% (8.1% y/y) to 1.553 million units from 1.476 million in August, revised from 1.470 million. It was the highest level of permits since March 2007. Permits to build single-family homes rose 7.8% (24.3% y/y) to 1.119 million, the fifth consecutive month of strong increase. Permits to build multi-family homes eased 0.9% (-19.2% y/y) to 434,000 after falling 13.4% in August.

By region, housing starts in the Northeast surged by two-thirds (26.1% y/y) to 145,000, the highest level since January. In the South, starts rose 6.2% (8.9% y/y) to 755,000 following August's 15.3% decline. In the West, starts improved 1.4% (13.6% y/y) to 350,000, the highest level since February. To the downside were housing starts in the Midwest which fell 32.7% (+4.4% y/y) to 165,000. It was the lowest level in four months.

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) Sep Aug Jul Sep Y/Y % 2019 2018 2017
Total 1,415 1,388 1,487 11.1 1,295 1,248 1,207
  Single-Family 1,108 1,021 992 22.3 893 872 851
  Multi-Family 307 367 495 -16.6 403 376 356
Starts By Region
  Northeast 145 87 131 26.1 115 111 112
  Midwest 165 245 209 4.4 170 170 180
  South 755 711 839 8.9 689 630 602
  West 350 345 308 13.6 322 337 314
Building Permits 1,553 1,476 1,483 8.1 1,386 1,329 1,285
close
large image