US Housing Starts/Permits Ugly In April After Huge Revisions

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, May 16, 2024 - 12:52 PM

Despite a plunge in sentiment and soaring mortgage rates, analysts expected Starts and Permits to increase in April.

They were half right, but both missed bigly - as Starts rose 5.7% MoM (below the +7.6% exp), up from a downwardly revised 16.8% plunge in March; Permits dropped 3.0% MoM (well below the +0.9% exp), but better than the downwardly revised 5.0% drop in March.

Source: Bloomberg

The downward revision for March meant it saw the largest MoM drop since COVID lockdowns.

Single- and Multi-Family Permits both dropped in April (-0.8% and -9.1% respectively) while Rental Unit Starts surged 31.4% MoM...

Source: Bloomberg

The Multifamily start jump was off COVID lockdown lows...

  • Single family permits down to 976K SAAR from 984K and the lowest since August

  • Multifamily permits down to 408K SAAR from 449K and the lowest since Oct 2020

Finally, just what will homebuilders do now that expectations for 2024 rate-cuts have collapsed?

Source: Bloomberg

The number of completed single-family homes climbed to a 1.09 million annualized rate, the most since November 2022. That may explain the softer advance in new groundbreaking activity... but construction employment is at record highs?

Source: Bloomberg

One thing is for sure, a surge in mortgage rates back above 7% chilled homebuilder sentiment dramatically...

Source: Bloomberg

Is Powell trying to engineer a slow motion crash in housing to lower OER and this CPI?