Have We Hit Peak Housing? US Housing Starts Disappoint in July

Posted by John Greene at Forest2Market

After falling to a nine-month low in June, US housing starts rebounded slightly and less than expected in July, suggesting the housing market will likely remain flat for the remainder of the year. Despite solid jobs numbers and wage growth, housing activity appears to have has stalled due to rising mortgage rates and an increasingly tight supply of homes that has driven prices ever higher.

Housing Starts, Permits & Completions

After dropping 12 percent in June, US housing starts rose just 0.9 percent in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 1,168,000 units. Data for June was revised down to show starts declining to a 1.158 million-unit rate, the lowest level since September 2017, instead of the previously reported 1.173 million-unit pace.

Single-family starts accounted for 862,000 units, which is 0.9 percent above the revised June figure of 854,000, and starts for the volatile multi-family housing segment gained 0.7 percent to a rate of 306,000 units in July. Privately-owned housing authorizations inched up 1.5 percent to a rate of 1,311,000 units in July. Single-family authorizations increased to 869,000, which is 1.9 percent above the revised June figure.

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