- Reuters/Rick Wilking
Housing starts rose more than expected, while building permits disappointed.
Housing starts surged by 6.6% in April to 1.172 million. Economists were expecting housing starts to rise 3.3% to 1.125 million.
Meanwhile, building permits rose only by 3.6% to 1.116 million, below expecations of a 5.5% rise to 1.135 million in April.
Last month, housing starts fell 8.8% at a seasonally adjusted rate of 1.089 million, while building permits fell 7.7% at an annualized pace of 1.086 million.
“Housing starts have been notoriously volatile in recent months, but there are some encouraging figures in April’s report. Activity in the Midwest spiked after contributing to much of last month’s slowdown and nationwide building permits also rose, signaling positive momentum building in new home construction,” Quicken Loans Vice President Bill Banfield told Business Insider after the data crossed.
“Smoothing through the monthly volatility, permits have been hovering in their current range for most of the last year. And with permits running below starts for both single and multi-family, we continue to look for only moderate growth in housing activity in the coming months,” wrote JP Morgan’s Jesse Edgerton in a note to clients.