May housing starts post modest recovery from April’s slump

By Jann Swanson | Mortgage Daily News

Housing starts recovered in May after falling more than 9 percent in April but permitting had another lackluster month. The U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development report that residential units were started at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.572 million, a 3.6 percent improvement on the revised (from 1.569 million) rate of 1.517 million in April. Starts are running 50.3 percent ahead of the rate in May 2020.

May’s results were slightly lower than expected. Analysts polled by Econoday had a consensus estimate of 1.630 million. The forecasts ranged from 1.500 to 1.735 million.

Construction was begun on single-family houses at an annual rate of 1.098 million, a 4.2 percent gain from April’s revised rate of 1.054 million and up 49.8 percent year-over-year. The April starts were originally reported at a rate of 1.087 million. Multifamily starts rose 4.0 percent to 465,000 units and are 52.5 percent higher on an annual basis.

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