Housing starts

Release Date: Usually released on a monthly basis, 17 days after the month has come to an end
Release Time: Usually at 8.30am Eastern US time
Released By: The Census Bureau


The US Housing Starts report is a monthly report issued out of the United States by the US Census Bureau. It is usually released at the same time as the US Building Permits. The Housing Starts is the total number of new residential buildings on which construction began in the previous month, which is the month under review. It is published in an annualized format (monthly reading x12).

Time of Release

The Housing Starts data are usually released on a monthly basis, 17 days after the month has come to an end. Information about this news release can be obtained from the Census Bureau website. The news release time is 8.30am Eastern US time.

Interpreting the Data

This data is usually overshadowed by Building Permits, which has a higher market impact. The Housing Starts is a moderate impact news release. Both sets of data are closely correlated. However a building permit must be issued by the relevant authorities prior to commencement of house construction.

It is a leading indicator of the health of the US economy. The real estate sector is a massive employer of different sectors of labor (construction workers, architects, town planners, surveyors, inspectors, plumbers, painters, healthcare, safety gadget manufacturers and retailers, etc). Therefore, an increase in the housing starts is good for the USD, while falling housing starts numbers are USD negative.

Conclusion

Even though the housing starts are not directly tradable, they are a very important indicator of the state of the housing market in the US, as well as the employment situation in the US. This is a closely watched news release because of the relevance of the US housing market to the global economy post-2008.