Housing Starts Surge In October

Date: November 22, 2016

Commerce Department Data Shows Housing Starts Up Most In Nine Years

According to the latest Commerce Department data, US housing starts rose 25.5% in October from September to an annualized rate of 1.32 million. Bloomberg News reported that this represented the fastest annualized housing start rate “since August 2007,” and exceeded “the highest projection in a Bloomberg survey.” In addition, starts on multifamily units were “up a whopping 68.8 percent.” The figures indicate the housing market “was making greater progress a month before a jump in mortgage rates.” Bloomberg adds that permits edged up 0.3 percent to a 1.23 million annualized rate, beating a forecast of a “fall to a 1.19 million pace.” USA Today reports that in addition to a rise in multifamily units, “single-family starts increased 10.7% to an annual rate of 869,000, which also marked a postrecession high.” And, building permits exceeded the 1.19 million mark that economists were anticipating. Starts rose the most in the Northeast, which saw a 44.8% gain, while the Midwest saw a 44.1% gain, the West a 23.2% gain, and the South a 17.9% gain. Barclays economist Rob Martin wrote, “Today’s data reaffirm our view that steady improvement in the housing market is likely to continue over the next two years.” However, Trulia Chief Economist Ralph McLaughlin noted that “despite the strong performance, housing starts are still only about 66% of their 50 year average,” indicating there is plenty of room for improvement when it comes to the current economy.

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small businesses have experienced great uncertainty due to a lack of positive signals that the economy is improving. The latest housing start data is one of the more positive signals about the economy that has happened in recent months, and it may help small businesses feel less uncertain about the future direction of the US economy. This is welcome, particularly coming at the start of what is a crucial holiday season for many small businesses.

Additional Reading

Reuters and the Wall Street Journal also covered the story.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

Related Content: Small Business News | Economy | National

Subscribe For Free News And Tips

Enter your email to get FREE small business insights. Learn more

Get to know NFIB

NFIB is a member-driven organization advocating on behalf of small and independent businesses nationwide.

Learn More

Or call us today
1-800-634-2669

© 2001 - 2022 National Federation of Independent Business. All Rights Reserved. Terms and Conditions | Privacy