Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Housing Starts increased to 1.089 Million Annual Rate in December

by Bill McBride on 1/21/2015 08:30:00 AM

From the Census Bureau: Permits, Starts and Completions

Housing Starts:
Privately-owned housing starts in December were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,089,000. This is 4.4 percent above the revised November estimate of 1,043,000 and is 5.3 percent above the December 2013 rate of 1,034,000.

Single-family housing starts in December were at a rate of 728,000; this is 7.2 percent above the revised November figure of 679,000. The December rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 339,000.

An estimated 1,005,800 housing units were started in 2014. This is 8.8 percent above the 2013 figure of 924,900.
emphasis added

Building Permits:
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in December were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,032,000. This is 1.9 percent below the revised November rate of 1,052,000, but is 1.0 percent above the December 2013 estimate of [1,022,000].

Single-family authorizations in December were at a rate of 667,000; this is 4.5 percent above the revised November figure of 638,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 338,000 in December.
Total Housing Starts and Single Family Housing Starts Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows single and multi-family housing starts for the last several years.

Multi-family starts (red, 2+ units) decreased slightly in December.  Multi-family starts are up 5% year-over-year.

Single-family starts (blue) increased in  December and are at the highest level since March 2008.

The second graph shows total and single unit starts since 1968.

Total Housing Starts and Single Family Housing Starts The second graph shows the huge collapse following the housing bubble, and - after moving sideways for about two years and a half years - housing is now recovering (but still historically low),

This was above expectations of 1.040 million starts in December, and starts in October and November were revised up, so this was a solid report.  I'll have more later ...