Housing Starts Up, Permits Drop
A government report this morning showed that the pace of homebuilding increased 6.7 percent in November, rebounding from a poor showing in October. While housing starts increased, the Commerce Department said permits to build new homes dropped to their lowest level in at least nine years. According to the Commerce Department's report, November housing starts beat economists' expectations and came in at an annual pace of 1.588 million units, compared to 1.488 million units in October and 2.131 one year ago. Economists had forecast November housing starts to climb to 1.530 million units. Housing permits were expected to be reported at a 1.540 million pace but came in at 1.506 million units, a drop from 1.553 million in October and the lowest total since the end of 1997.