Single-family starts, the largest segment of the market, went up 3.7 percent to 877 thousand and the volatile multi-family segment increased 19.7 percent to 431 thousand. Overall, housing starts went up in the South (9.3 percent to 655 thousand); the West (10.7 percent to 393 thousand) and the Northeast (45.5 percent to 128 thousand) but fell in the Midwest (-10.2 percent to 150 thousand).
Building permits soared 7.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 1,396 thousand, the highest since June of 2007 and above market expectations of 1,300 thousand. Multi-family home permits jumped 25.4 percent to 479 thousand while permits for construction of single-family homes fell 1.7 percent to 866 thousand. Permits rose in the South (21.9 percent to 706 thousand) and in the West (5.3 percent to 378 thousand) but shrank in the Midwest (-11.7 percent to 189 thousand) and the Northeast (-16.9 percent to 123 thousand).
Year-on-year, starts went up 7.3 percent and permits gained 7.4 percent.