Housing starts rose to a 658K-unit pace in September on the heels of an upwardly revised 572K-unit pace in the month of August. The gain was driven primarily by a 51.3 percent increase in multifamily starts.
The leading economic index rose 0.2 percent in September and has risen 5 percent over the past three months. This pattern suggests continued growth for the next six months, yet the pace of growth remains modest.
The Philadelphia Fed survey jumped back into positive territory in October with business activity, shipments and new orders all posting strong increases. The employment index suggests hiring activity remains weak.
Sales of existing homes fell 3.0 percent in September to a 4.9 million-unit pace from an upwardly revised 5.06 million-unit pace in August. Contract cancelations remained exceptionally high at 18 percent.
On balance, the outlook remains for moderate economic growth with the accompanying three problems of housing, employment and government restructuring.
Champion Home Builders joins forces with California-based USModular to offer turnkey solutions to developers of multifamily projects.
Finnforest is planning production curtailments at sawmills belonging to its wood products industry division due to deteriorating sales opportunities on the domestic and foreign softwood lumber markets.
The producer price index (PPI) for finished goods increased 0.5%, not seasonally adjusted (0.8%, seasonally adjusted) in September and 6.9% over 12 months, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Tuesday.
A 15% increase--sequentially--for total housing starts amounts to headline eclat and a Wall Street equities market shot in the arm, as starts beat expectations by better than 11%.