|HUD No. 16-158
Brian Sullivan, Office of Public Affairs
Raemeka Mayo or Stephen Cooper, Economic Indicators Division
October 19, 2016
HUD AND CENSUS BUREAU ANNOUNCE NEW RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION ACTIVITY IN SEPTEMBER
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Census Bureau jointly announced the following new residential construction statistics for September 2016:
Privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,225,000. This is 6.3 percent (±1.9%) above the revised August rate of 1,152,000, but is 8.5 percent (±2.4%) above the September 2015 estimate of 1,129,000. Single-family authorizations in September were at a rate of 739,000; this is 0.4 percent (±1.6%) above the revised August figure of 736,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 449,000 in September.
Privately owned housing starts in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,047,000. This is 9.0 percent (±9.2%)* below the revised August estimate of 1,150,000, but is 11.9 percent (±11.9%)* below the September 2015 rate of 1,189,000. Single-family housing starts in September were at a rate of 783,000; this is 8.1 percent (±7.4%)* above the revised August figure of 724,000. The September rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 250,000.
Privately owned housing completions in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 951,000. This is 8.4 percent (±10.3%)* below the revised August estimate of 1,038,000 and is 5.8 percent (±13.4%)* below the September 2015 rate of 1,010,000. Single-family housing completions in September were at a rate of 687,000; this is 8.8 percent (±9.8%)* below the revised August rate of 753,000. The September rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 250,000.
In interpreting changes in the statistics in this release, note that month-to-month changes in seasonally adjusted statistics often show movements which may be irregular. It may take two months to establish an underlying trend for building permit authorizations, 4 months for total starts, and six months for total completions. The statistics in this release are estimated from sample surveys and are subject to sampling variability as well as nonsampling error including bias and variance from response, nonreporting, and undercoverage. Estimated relative standard errors of the most recent data are shown in the tables. Whenever a statement such as "2.5 percent (±3.2%) above" appears in the text, this indicates the range (-0.7 to +5.7 percent) in which the actual percent change is likely to have occurred. All ranges given for percent changes are 90-percent confidence intervals and account only for sampling variability. If a range does not contain zero, the change is statistically significant. If it does contain zero, the change is not statistically significant; that is, it is uncertain whether there was an increase or decrease. The same policies apply to the confidence intervals for percent changes shown in the tables. On average, the preliminary seasonally adjusted estimates of total building permits, housing starts and housing completions are revised about three percent or less. Explanations of confidence intervals and sampling variability can be found on our web site listed above.
* 90% confidence interval includes zero. The Census Bureau does not have sufficient statistical evidence to conclude that the actual change is different from zero.
Read more about today's release of housing construction activity (www.census.gov/construction/nrc/).