The monthly report on new residential construction from the Commerce
Department revealed on Thursday that housing starts declined by 4.5 percent
m-o-m in January 2023 to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 1.309 million (the
lowest level since June 2020 (1.273 million)), while building permits increased
by 0.1 percent m-o-m to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.339.
Economists had expected housing starts to fall to a pace of 1.360
million units last month and building permits to rise to a pace of 1.350
Data for December 2022 was revised to show homebuilding increasing at a
pace of 1.371 million units, instead of rising at a rate of 1.382 million units
as previously reported.
According to the report, permits for single-family homes, the largest
segment of the market, fell by 1.8 percent m-o-m in January, while approvals
for the multi-family homes segment (includes 2 to 4 and 5 or more housing
units) increased by 2.5 percent m-o-m.
In the meantime, groundbreaking on single-family
homes tumbled by 4.3 percent m-o-m in January, while multi-unit starts plunged by
5.4 percent m-o-m.