Housing Starts Increased in May

Housing starts increased to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.294 million in May, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. The rise was 0.3 percent above the revised April rate of 1.290 million but is 0.5 percent below the May 2018 rate. Single-family home starts decreased 6.4 percent from last month.

Housing activity increased in two of the four regions as the South and West grew 6.8 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively. The Northeast and the Midwest declined, falling 24.6 percent and 8.4 percent, respectively.

New building permits increased during the month, growing 0.9 percent to 1.269 million. Single-family building permits fell 6.4 percent.

Housing completions were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.213 million, down 9.5 percent from the revised March estimate and down 2.8 percent from the May 2018 rate.

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About Author

Hugo Dante

Hugo Dante is a research associate in the Economic Policy and Research group at the ABA.