US home building slides 3.7 percent in April

WASHINGTON — U.S. builders broke ground on fewer apartment buildings last month, pushing overall home construction down 3.7 percent from March.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that housing starts fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.29 million in April, lowest since December. Apartment construction tumbled 12.6 percent to 374,000. Construction of single-family homes blipped up 0.1 percent to 894,000.

Still, housing starts are up 10.5 percent from April 2017 on a 7.2 percent increase in single-family homes, and a 19.1 percent surge in apartments.

Home construction has grown steadily since the housing crash hit bottom in 2012. The pace of homebuilding is still below its long-run average of about 1.5 million a year, which has led to a shortage of homes on the market. Millennials are increasingly moving out on their own to buy their own homes.

Demand for housing is strong despite an uptick in mortgage rates: The rate on the benchmark 30-year, fixed-rate home loan is 4.55 percent, up from 4.05 percent a year ago.

In April, housing starts fell 16.3 percent in the Midwest, 12 percent in the West and 8.1 percent in the Northeast. They rose 6.4 percent in the South.

Building permits, an indicator of future construction, fell 1.8 percent in April to a seasonally adjusted 1.35 million.

Must Read

Home Depot rides housing boom to record sales, profit

Aug 16, 2016

Home Depot posted record sales and earnings during its second quarter and raised its profit expectations for the year as housing market continues to warm up

UK manufacturers see costs jump in wake of Brexit vote

Aug 16, 2016

Official figures show consumer prices in Britain rose more than expected in July, while the cost of raw materials for manufacturers are mounting as a result of the pound's drop in the wake of the vote to leave the European Union

US home construction climbed to a 6-month high in July

Aug 16, 2016

US home construction climbed to a 6-month high in July, led by a jump in apartment buildings

Search

Obserworld delivers the most accurate and up-to-date world news for the global audience with a thorough research and in-depth interviews. Discover the world through Obserworld.

Contact us: sales[at]obserworld.com