HOUSING STARTS RISE
Housing starts rose 14.6% from May to June says the Commerce Department. Apartment construction surged 31.8% last month while construction of single family homes was up 9.4%. Building permits jumped by 2.5%. Those numbers were the best showing for the industry since January and single-family home construction saw the biggest monthly increase since June 2009. To put this all in perspective, builders are now 31% ahead of the lowest point in construction starts in April 2009 but down about 73% from the peak in January 2006.
Confidence among home builders rose this month to a still low level of 15 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo sentiment index. “The market continues to bounce along the bottom, with conditions in some locations beginning to improve,” NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe said today in a statement.