The rate of single-family housing starts rose for the fifth straight month in July but were down 37.7 percent compared to the same month last year, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of single-family building-permit authorizations rose for the fourth straight month in July. This rate is a projection of a monthly total over a 12-month period, adjusted to account for typical seasonal fluctuations in construction activity. The multifamily sector was hammered in July -- the rate of building-permit authorizations for structures with five or more units plunged an estimated 26.3 percent compared to June and 73.2 percent compared to July 2008, while multifamily starts sank an estimated 16.7 percent in July and 72.1 percent compared to the same month last year. Total privately owned housing starts in July fell by 1 percent from June at a seasonally adjusted rate of 581,000 units, while single-family housing starts were up by 1.7 percent from...
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