Instant view: Housing starts hit 6-month high, permits up

Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. housing starts rose more than expected in June to touch a six-month high and permits for future construction unexpectedly increased, a government report showed on Tuesday, likely reflecting growing demand for rental apartments.

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DAVID MANN, SENIOR CURRENCY STRATEGIST, STANDARD CHARTERED, NEW YORK

"In the grand scheme of things, it's nice to see it jump higher, but it doesn't take us out of the range we've been in. So there's still an extremely long way to go before we can be sure there's a serious recovery underway. It's good to see but we need to see a lot more of this for a good few months before we become less concerned about the housing market."

DAVID SLOAN, ECONOMIST, IFR ECONOMICS, A UNIT OF THOMSON REUTERS

"June housing starts and permits with respective gains of 14.6%, to 629k, and 2.5%, to 624k, both comfortably exceeded consensus expectations, which stood at 580k for starts and 600k for permits. The signs of recovery are only persuasive in the multiples sector, though June's rise in starts was broad based. The latest data looks a little stronger than several recent surveys, particularly a very weak June NAHB homebuilders survey, the dip in which was only partially reversed in July. The data provides comfort in that it suggests housing is not going to be a significant negative in upcoming GDP data, assuming debt default is avoided. However, we will need to see substantially improved data from home sales before housing plays a significant part in the recovery."

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