Today, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that housing starts hit 1.55 million for September, and housing permits came in at 1.589 million. These data lines missed monthly expectations, and we had negative revisions to the previous months when combined — overall, not the most exciting report. However, one thing to always remember with housing starts data is that the month-to-month data can be extreme but the long-term trend does tell the real story of what is going on.
What that story is telling us is that we have enough demand to keep building homes in America.
On permits, the Census reports: Privately‐owned housing units authorized by building permits in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,589,000. This is 7.7 percent (±0.9 percent) below the revised August rate of 1,721,000, but is virtually unchanged from (±1.1 percent)* the September 2020 rate of 1,589,000. Single‐family authorizations in September were at a rate of 1,041,000; this is 0.9 percent (±0.8 percent) below the revised August figure of 1,050,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 498,000 in September.
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