PhotoA bit of a slowdown last month for the home construction industry.

The Commerce Department reports ground-breaking for privately-owned housing dipped 0.3% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,164,000. Even with the decline though, the pace of construction is 9.5% ahead of the same month last year.

Housing starts for single-family homes were up 0.3% from April and 10.1% from a year ago to a rate of 764,000. The rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 396,000, up 1.3% from the month before and 10.0% from May 2015.

Building permits

Looking ahead, building permits for privately-owned housing units rose 0.7% from April but plunged 10.1% from the same month the year before to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,138,000.

Single-family authorizations posted a 2.0% month-over-month decline in May to a rate of 726,000, while permits for units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 381,000 -- up 5.7% from April.

The complete report is available on the Commerce Department website.


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