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Housing starts up 82 percent from 2009 trough

Builder confidence also up for 6th month in a row

Housing starts reached their highest level in more than four years in September, according to the latest numbers from the Census Bureau. Builders started construction on new homes and apartment units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 872,000 units in September. That's up 15 percent from August and 34.8 percent from a year ago, and the fastest pace of new housing construction since July 2008. Housing starts have been rising on an annual basis since September 2011 and are now 82 percent above their April 2009 trough -- 478,000 -- according to census records dating back to January 1959. Financial blogger Bill McBride said he expects builders will continue playing catch up for years to come, providing support for an economic recovery."My estimate is the U.S. will probably add around 12 million households this decade, and assuming no excess supply, total housing starts would be 1.2 million per year, plus demolitions and second-home purchases," McBride wro...

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