UtahCribs Weblog

Real Estate, Homes, News, Statistics and more

U.S. housing starts surge!

Posted by UtahCribs, Real Estate, Homes on March 17, 2009

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – New U.S. housing starts and permits unexpectedly rebounded in February, according to data on Tuesday that provided a rare dose of good news for the recession-hit economy and fractured housing market.

The Commerce Department said housing starts jumped 22.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 583,000 units from 477,000 units in January. That was the biggest percentage rise since January 1990 and also marked the first increase since last April.

“That is an encouraging sign for the U.S. economy. It is good signal of what is to come. With the rally in equities we hopefully have seen a bottom for the economy here,” said Matt Esteve, foreign exchange trader at Tempus Consulting in Washington.

New building permits, which give a sense of future home construction, rose 3.0 percent to 547,000 units, from 531,000 units in January. That also marked the first advance in permits since April last year.

Compared to the same period in 2008, housing starts were down 47.3 percent in February and permits declined 44.2 percent. Completions rose 2.3 percent to a rate of 785,000 from January’s 767,000.

HOUSING STABILITY KEY

The housing market is at the center of the financial and economic meltdown and bringing some measure of stability to the sector is crucial to rescuing the economy.

Collapsing house and stock market values are a drag on consumer spending, which accounts for over a third of economic activity.

Finally some good news in the Real Estate industry. We continually get people being negative about Real Estate here in Utah. We understand a lot of the problems that we currently have right now were spurred by the real estate bubble. There is no arguing that point. However, I think most of us all understand that our entire economy is intertwined between different sectors of the market. Real Estate tanks and so does the rest of the country.  A little good news is going to go a long way, hopefully the goal is some stabilization within the markets?

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