New Residential Housing Starts Down 7% in July

The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for July new residential housing starts. The latest reading of 1.534M was below the forecast of 1.600M and a 7.0% decrease from the previous month's 1.650M.

Here is the opening of this morning's monthly report, including a note on revisions:

Housing Starts

Privately‐owned housing starts in July were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,534,000. This is 7.0 percent (±8.9 percent)* below the revised June estimate of 1,650,000, but is 2.5 percent (±10.9 percent)* above the July 2020 rate of 1,497,000. Single‐family housing starts in July were at a rate of 1,111,000; this is 4.5 percent (±9.9 percent)* below the revised June figure of 1,163,000. The July rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 412,000. [link to report]

Here is the historical series for total privately-owned housing starts, which dates from 1959. Because of the extreme volatility of the monthly data points, a 6-month moving average has been included.