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Statement from Commerce Secretary Gary Locke on New Residential Construction in October 2010

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
202-482-4883

The Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau today released data on new residential construction in October 2010.  Permits for new housing units edged up 0.5 percent in October, below private-sector expectations of a 3.8-percent rise.  Housing starts fell 11.7 percent, beyond private-sector expectations of a modest decline. Starts of single-family homes declined 1.1 percent, and multi-family starts fell 43.5 percent in October.

“While recent months have shown increases in housing activity, today’s data reminds us that employment and incomes must continue to strengthen before the housing market is likely to show sustainable growth,” Locke said. “The backlog of homes under construction has been greatly reduced, however, which is a positive sign for future construction growth.”

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