Driven by a 44 percent drop in multifamily units, housing starts in the U.S. fell to a 519,000 annual rate in October, down 12 percent from September and the slowest pace since the record low of 477,000 reached in April 2009. Single-family home starts fell 1.1 percent.
Record-low mortgage rates have failed to boost demand, highlighting the limits of Federal Reserve monetary policy in undoing the damage from the bursting of the housing bubble. Companies like D.R. Horton Inc. are bracing for the worst in early 2011 as unemployment hovers near 10 percent and the lifting of foreclosure moratoriums swells the supply of houses.
Now about that Base Case scenario…
∙ Housing Starts in U.S. Drop 12%, More Than Forecast [Bloomberg]
∙ FHA: Not Out Of The Woods Yet Feeling A Little Less Lost [SocketSite]