Explaining Southern California's economy

Housing goes flat? August starts remain at July levels

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

A construction worker installs a window in a new home at the Arbor Rose housing development in San Mateo, California. Housing starts were relatively flat from July to August, according to the the government.

The government has released data on housing starts for August, and while positive, it isn't a significant increase over July. We got an annual rate of 750,000 nationally, against a downwardly revised July figure of 733,000, an increase of just over 2 percent. 

A consensus of economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected better: a rate of 767,000. The good news, however, is that August 2012 saw a big jump over August of last year — 29 percent — when starts managed a rate of only 581,000.

Regionally, the West saw a big chunk of that activity, with a rate of 176,000 starts, but came in second overall to the South, which contributed a rate 364,000.

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