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Home construction up 4.9% in October to 1.53 million

Construction work continues on March 17 on a new home in Mebane, North Carolina U.S. housing construction slowed by 5.1% in August after three months of strong gains as home builders mounted a rebound following a pandemic-induced shutdown in March and April.   (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

Construction work continues on March 17 on a new home in Mebane, North Carolina U.S. housing construction slowed by 5.1% in August after three months of strong gains as home builders mounted a rebound following a pandemic-induced shutdown in March and April. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The number of homes built increased by 4.9% in October as home building remained one of the bright spots of the economy.

The increase pushed home construction to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.53 million homes and apartments and followed a more modest gain of 1.9% in September.

Building permits, a good barometer of future activity, remained at a seasonally adjusted rate of 1.55 million annualized units, effectively unchanged from September. The figure remains up 2.8% from a year earlier, showing how strong the housing market was over the summer despite the pandemic.

Several reports over the last two months have shown the housing market cooling off after a tremendous summer, but that is not surprising. The fall and winter are typically slow times for home buying and home construction, mostly due to the weather.

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