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US housing starts fall by more than expected in March

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Tuesday 16 Apr 2024

US housing starts fall by more than expected in March

(Sharecast News) - Builders broke ground on fewer new homes last month than anticipated.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, in seasonally adjusted terms housing starts dropped at a month-on-month pace of 14.7% in March to reach an annual rate of 1.321m (consensus: 1.48m).

Starts for single family homes fell by 12.4% to 1.022m.

Permits meanwhile, which are considered to be a lead indicator for starts, dropped by 4.3% to 1.458m (consensus: 1.514m).

Nancy Vanden Houten at Oxford Economics labelled March's decline in housing starts disappointing and said the permits data were flashing a warning sign.

"The drop in permits and the spike in mortgage rates following the release of the March CPI report lend some downside risk to our forecast for a modest rise in housing starts over the rest of 2024," she said.

"Our current baseline assumes housing starts will rise to an annual pace of about 1.5mn in the second half from 1.42mn in Q1."

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