Housing Starts Decline Due To Stronger Revisions

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Today, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that there were 1,246,000 housing starts recorded for  January.  Revisions for December were larger, pushing starts up to 1,279,000, resulting in a decline in the month to month comparison of -2.6%

Housing Starts

Privately-owned housing starts in January were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,246,000. This is 2.6 percent (±11.0 percent)* below the revised December estimate of 1,279,000, but is 10.5 percent (±15.3 percent)* above the January 2016 rate of 1,128,000. Single-family housing starts in January were at a rate of 823,000; this is 1.9 percent (±10.8 percent)* above the revised December figure of 808,000. The January rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 421,000.

Building Permits 

Building Permits Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in January were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,285,000. This is 4.6 percent (±2.0 percent) above the revised December rate of 1,228,000 and is 8.2 percent (±1.6 percent) above the January 2016 rate of 1,188,000. Single-family authorizations in January were at a rate of 808,000; this is 2.7 percent (±1.9 percent) below the revised December figure of 830,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 446,000 in January.

Single family starts were up 6.2% from last year and permits were up  8.2% year over year.

Slow and steady growth has been the story on housing and this continues. The permit data was the most positive aspect of this report. We are still showing growth going into 2017. The rate of growth for multifamily housing has cooled down  but still showing some growth. The key metric for housing starts is to see growth in the single family home sector as we need more lower priced, smaller homes —which have been lacking in this economic cycle. 

From Calculated Risk: 
http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2017/02/housing-starts-at-1246-million-annual.html

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From Doug Short

https://www.advisorperspectives.com/dshort/updates/2017/02/16/new-residential-housing-starts-in-january-beat-consensus

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Logan Mohtashami is a financial writer and blogger covering the U.S. economy with a specialization in the housing marketLogan Mohtashami is a senior loan officer at AMC Lending Group,  which has been providing mortgage services for California residents since 1987. Logan also tracks all economic data  daily on his own facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Logan.Mohtashami