Housing starts rose 15 percent, or a seasonally adjusted rate of 658,000. That blew away analysts' forecasts of an increase to a 590,000-unit rate.Economists look to both housing starts and building permits as leading indicators, but building permits forecast further ahead than housing starts do.
Starts surged in September at their fastest annual pace in 17 months on a big increase in groundbreaking for multi-family units, while permits for future construction fell.
Building permits dropped 5 percent to 594,000.
Housing starts for buildings with two or more units rose 51.3 percent to a 233,000-unit rate. Single-family home construction — which accounts for a larger share of the market — increased 1.7 percent to a 425,000-unit pace.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Housing starts up big; permits fall
U.S. housing starts were up 15% from August to September: