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Construction of new homes in U.S. dropped in January

Housing Starts U.S. Economic Indicators


Housing starts fell again after recent increases, following very solid December report.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development reported the housing starts in U.S. deteriorated in January by -2.5 % on the seasonally adjusted basis to annual rate of 1,567,000 units, a decrease of 41,000 units from 1,608,000 in December. The construction of single-family fell by -4.3% to annual rate of 1,010,000 units. The increase in rental demand led to higher construction of apartments, accounting for 35.55 % of total housing starts.

A healthier housing market, however, would give a big boost to the economy. From Jan. 2019, housing starts jumped by 23.1 %, as housing starts in the West 45.6 % led the increase, this is the main reason why some economists are optimistic about the housing market, despite the recent slowdown.



Housing Starts

  M/M Y/Y
  Northeast 33.83% 28.06 %
  Midwest -29.13% 41.73 %
  South -3.95% 9.42 %
  West 4.87% 45.61 %
  Single-family -4.27% 4.12 %
  2 - 4 units -41.18% -44.44%
  5 or more units 2.05% 91.93 %


Building permits have rebounded from decline in previous period, permits soared by 9.5 % or 135,000 units to an annual rate of 1,567,000 units, from 1,608,000 in December on the seasonally adjusted basis Most of growth took place in the Northeast and it was concentrated in multi-dwelling buildings such as apartments.

New permits went up 36.6 % to annual rate of 431,000 units in the Northeast while permits for multi-family units grew 12.8 % accounting for 35.55 % of total permits issued.

Permits give an indication of whether demand for new homes is growing or slowing. Compare to a year ago monthly building permits soared by 17.8 %




Permits By Region
  • In Northeast housing units were authorized at seasonally adjusted annual rate of 183,000 units, an increase of 49,000 units, or 36.57 % from 134,000 units Dec. 2019 and an increase of 35.56 % from 135,000 units Jan. 2019.


  • In Midwest housing units were authorized at seasonally adjusted annual rate of 225,000 units, an increase of 18,000 units, or 8.70 % from 207,000 units Dec. 2019 and an increase of 20.97 % from 186,000 units Jan. 2019.


  • In West housing units were authorized at seasonally adjusted annual rate of 398,000 units, an increase of 11,000 units, or 2.84 % from 387,000 units Dec. 2019 and an increase of 17.40 % from 339,000 units Jan. 2019.
  • In South housing units were authorized at seasonally adjusted annual rate of 745,000 units, an increase of 57,000 units, or 8.28 % from 688,000 units Dec. 2019 and an increase of 13.39 % from 657,000 units Jan. 2019.

New Housing Units Authorized
(Seasonally adj., at Annual Rate, units), units)
Jan. 2020

prel.
Dec. 2019

prel.
Nov. 2019

prel.
Oct. 2019

prel.
Sep. 2019

prel.
Total
1,551,000 1,416,000 1,474,000 1,461,000 1,387,000
In structures Single-family units
987,000 916,000 921,000 911,000 882,000
In structures with 2 - 4 units
42,000 42,000 38,000 48,000 35,000
In structures with 5 units or more
522,000 458,000 515,000 502,000 470,000
Northeast
183,000 134,000 159,000 138,000 113,000
Midwest
225,000 207,000 206,000 179,000 176,000
South
745,000 688,000 736,000 773,000 732,000
West
398,000 387,000 373,000 371,000 366,000



New Housing Units Authorized
(Seasonally adj., at Annual Rate, units), in M / M)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 9.53 % -3.93 % 0.89 % 5.34 % -2.26 %
In structures Single-family units 7.75 % -0.54 % 1.1 % 3.29 % 1.85 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units 0 % 10.53 % -20.83 % 37.14 % -20.45 %
In structures with 5 units or more 13.97 % -11.07 % 2.59 % 6.81 % -7.66 %
Northeast 36.57 % -15.72 % 15.22 % 22.12 % -25.17 %
Midwest 8.7 % 0.49 % 15.08 % 1.7 % -6.88 %
South 8.28 % -6.52 % -4.79 % 5.6 % -2.14 %
West 2.84 % 3.75 % 0.54 % 1.37 % 10.57 %



New Housing Units Authorized
(Seasonally adj., at Annual Rate, units), in % Y/Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 17.77 % 6.79 % 10.99 % 15.68 % 11.76 %
In structures Single-family units 20.22 % 10.49 % 8.61 % 7.3 % 3.64 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -4.55 % 13.51 % -2.56 % 26.32 % -10.26 %
In structures with 5 units or more 15.49 % -0.43 % 16.78 % 33.51 % 33.9 %
Northeast 35.56 % 21.82 % 32.5 % 20 % 22.83 %
Midwest 20.97 % 42.76 % 16.38 % -4.28 % 14.29 %
South 13.39 % 0 % 3.95 % 19.29 % 11.93 %
West 17.4 % 1.04 % 15.48 % 18.53 % 7.33 %



New Housing Units Started
(Seasonally adj., at Annual Rate, units)
Jan. 2020

prel.
Dec. 2019

prel.
Nov. 2019

prel.
Oct. 2019

prel.
Sep. 2019

prel.
Total
1,567,000 1,608,000 1,375,000 1,340,000 1,256,000
In structures Single-family units
1,010,000 1,055,000 949,000 914,000 918,000
In structures with 2 - 4 units
10,000 17,000 20,000 12,000 11,000
In structures with 5 units or more
547,000 536,000 406,000 414,000 327,000
Northeast
178,000 133,000 106,000 115,000 109,000
Midwest
180,000 254,000 185,000 179,000 167,000
South
778,000 810,000 741,000 692,000 676,000
West
431,000 411,000 343,000 354,000 304,000



New Housing Units Started
(Seasonally adj. at Annual Rate, units), in Y / Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total -2.55 % 16.95 % 2.61 % 6.69 % -7.92 %
In structures Single-family units -4.27 % 11.17 % 3.83 % -0.44 % -0.11 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -41.18 % -15 % 66.67 % 9.09 % -47.62 %
In structures with 5 units or more 2.05 % 32.02 % -1.93 % 26.61 % -22.88 %
Northeast 33.83 % 25.47 % -7.83 % 5.5 % -12.1 %
Midwest -29.13 % 37.3 % 3.35 % 7.19 % -20.48 %
South -3.95 % 9.31 % 7.08 % 2.37 % -4.92 %
West 4.87 % 19.83 % -3.11 % 16.45 % -4.7 %



New Housing Units Started
(Seasonally adj. at Annual Rate, in % Y/Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 23.1 % 49.17 % 9.47 % 9.12 % 4.58 %
In structures Single-family units 4.12 % 39.18 % 15.17 % 5.66 % 5.4 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -44.44 % -5.56 % 33.33 % -40 % 83.33 %
In structures with 5 units or more 91.93 % 77.48 % -2.64 % 20.7 % 0.93 %
Northeast 28.06 % 24.3 % -14.52 % 32.18 % -9.17 %
Midwest 41.73 % 103.2 % 18.59 % -14.76 % 4.38 %
South 9.42 % 28.57 % 7.86 % 16.11 % 19.22 %
West 45.61 % 90.28 % 18.69 % 5.67 % -14.12 %



New Housing Units Authorized
(Not seasonally adjusted, units)
Jan. 2020

prel.
Dec. 2019

prel.
Nov. 2019

prel.
Oct. 2019

prel.
Sep. 2019

prel.
Total
113,000 107,300 107,500 131,700 114,300
In structures Single-family units
70,400 62,400 63,800 79,800 70,600
In structures with 2 - 4 units
3,000 3,200 2,900 4,200 3,000
In structures with 5 units or more
39,600 41,700 40,800 47,700 40,600
Northeast
12,400 11,700 12,600 12,900 9,700
Midwest
12,500 12,900 15,500 19,100 16,400
South
59,900 51,800 51,600 67,100 58,900
West
28,200 30,900 27,900 32,600 29,300



New Housing Units Authorized
(Not seasonally adjusted, in Y / Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 5.31 % -0.19 % -18.38 % 15.22 % -10 %
In structures Single-family units 12.82 % -2.19 % -20.05 % 13.03 % -9.6 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -6.25 % 10.34 % -30.95 % 40 % -26.83 %
In structures with 5 units or more -5.04 % 2.21 % -14.47 % 17.49 % -9.58 %
Northeast 5.98 % -7.14 % -2.33 % 32.99 % -24.81 %
Midwest -3.1 % -16.77 % -18.85 % 16.46 % -11.35 %
South 15.64 % 0.39 % -23.1 % 13.92 % -11.03 %
West -8.74 % 10.75 % -14.42 % 11.26 % -0.68 %


New Housing Units Authorized
(Not seasonally adjusted, in % Y/Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 19.7 % 12.47 % 5.7 % 17.07 % 18.32 %
In structures Single-family units 21.17 % 16.85 % 4.76 % 7.55 % 9.12 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -3.23 % 23.08 % -6.45 % 16.67 % -9.09 %
In structures with 5 units or more 18.92 % 5.84 % 8.22 % 37.07 % 41.46 %
Northeast 36.26 % 28.57 % 28.57 % 26.47 % 24.36 %
Midwest 25 % 55.42 % 10.71 % -3.05 % 19.71 %
South 16.76 % 5.07 % -2.09 % 20.9 % 19.47 %
West 17.01 % 8.04 % 10.71 % 20.3 % 13.13 %







New Housing Units Started
(Not seas. adj. at Annual Rate, units)
Jan. 2020

prel.
Dec. 2019

prel.
Nov. 2019

prel.
Oct. 2019

prel.
Sep. 2019

prel.
Total
109,100 108,500 103,100 114,800 112,900
In structures Single-family units
68,600 68,600 68,700 76,800 80,700
In structures with 2 - 4 units
700 1,200 1,700 1,100 1,100
In structures with 5 units or more
39,800 38,700 32,700 36,900 31,100
Northeast
12,300 9,300 8,600 10,600 10,300
Midwest
9,300 14,900 14,800 17,100 16,400
South
57,500 56,400 54,300 56,800 59,500
West
30,100 27,900 25,400 30,200 26,800






New Housing Units Started
(Not seas. adj. at Annual Rate, in Y / Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 0.55 % 5.24 % -10.19 % 1.68 % -6.77 %
In structures Single-family units 0 % -0.15 % -10.55 % -4.83 % -2.18 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -41.67 % -29.41 % 54.55 % 0 % -42.11 %
In structures with 5 units or more 2.84 % 18.35 % -11.38 % 18.65 % -15.26 %
Northeast 32.26 % 8.14 % -18.87 % 2.91 % -7.21 %
Midwest -37.58 % 0.68 % -13.45 % 4.27 % -15.03 %
South 1.95 % 3.87 % -4.4 % -4.54 % -3.72 %
West 7.89 % 9.84 % -15.89 % 12.69 % -7.27 %







New Housing Units Started
(Not seas. adj. at Annual Rate, in % Y/Y)
Jan. 2020
prel.
Dec. 2019
prel.
Nov. 2019
prel.
Oct. 2019
prel.
Sep. 2019
prel.
Total 28.2 % 51.32 % 7.51 % 6.99 % 6.41 %
In structures Single-family units 7.69 % 40 % 13.93 % 2.95 % 8.76 %
In structures with 2 - 4 units -46.15 % -7.69 % 30.77 % -38.89 % 83.33 %
In structures with 5 units or more 98.01 % 80.84 % -4.66 % 19.42 % -0.64 %
Northeast 39.77 % 25.68 % -14 % 27.71 % -7.21 %
Midwest 55 % 109.86 % 16.54 % -15.35 % 5.13 %
South 12.97 % 32.08 % 5.64 % 10.94 % 23.44 %
West 55.15 % 91.1 % 16.51 % 9.03 % -14.1 %

Source U.S. Department of Commerce

             
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