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Census: Single-family housing starts fall 39%

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Housing starts hit lowest level since January 1991 Single-family housing starts in July slipped to the lowest rate since January 1991, the U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development reported today. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of single-family starts was 641,000 in July, down about 39.2 percent compared to the same month last year. The rate of total starts, at 965,000, was down 29.6 percent year-over-year in July. The rate of building-permit authorizations was 937,000 in July, down 32.4 percent compared to July 2007, while the rate of single-family permit authorizations was 584,000, down 41.4 percent. The rate of housing completions dropped 31.7 percent in July compared to the same month last year. MDA DataQuick reports record price drop in San Francisco region San Francisco Bay Area home sales increased 2.2 percent in July compared to the same month last year -- it was the first time since January 2005 that the region has seen a year-ove...