Housing starts dropped sharply in November from the previous month, the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reported today.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate for privately owned housing starts in November fell approximately 13.1 percent to 1.77 million units. The annual rate for October was 2.04 million units. Single-family housing starts in November were at a rate of 1.45 million, down approximately 11.7 percent from the October figure of 1.64 million. The November estimate for units in buildings with five units or more was 288,000.

Privately owned housing completions in November were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.7 million units, a drop of approximately 6 percent from the revised October estimate of 1.81 million. Single-family housing completions in November were at a rate of 1.42 million, approximately 5.6 percent below the October figure of 1.51 million. The November rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 261,000.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate for privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in November fell approximately 1.5 percent to 1.99 million, down from the revised October rate of 2 million, but up approximately 3.5 percent from the year-ago rate of 1.92 million units.

Single-family authorizations in November were at a rate of 1.53 million, down approximately 1.9 percent from the October figure of 1.56 million. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 370,000 in November.

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