New data shows that housing starts hit an 8-year high in July, with a construction frenzy underway as the housing market continues on its recovery after the financial crash.
Home remodeling activity has been up as well, which helped Home Depot (HD.N) beat earnings estimates and see stock prices reach new heights. There have been other spill-over effects as well; the construction boom has helped lower the unemployment rate as construction firms increase hiring to meet demand, and all this building has driven the need for new trucks, new tools, and other light and medium industrial goods from companies like General Motors (GM) and Ford (F).
There may be some dark clouds on the horizon however; the number of new building permits, which usually signals construction that is to begin fairly soon, hit a sharp decline. This may be partially due to the end of the summer, but the numbers are down even when seasonally-adjusting.
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