Work was begun on 0.8 percent more single-family homes in January than had been started the month before, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development say.
And the number of single-family starts was up 20 percent from January 2012.
A 26.1 percent drop in starts, from December to January, on construction of apartment buildings and other multi-family homes dampened the news somewhat.
Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 12:53 pm
There were 335,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, down 37,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.
That's the lowest total for any one week since January 2008.
Sales of new homes edged down 0.3 percent in October from September, but were a healthy 17.2 percent above the pace of October 2011, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development report.
Sales of new single-family homes rose 5.7 percent in September from August and at an annual rate of 389,000 hit the fastest pace since April 2010, the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development say.
Sales were up 27.1 percent from September 2011.
Reuters calls the news "further evidence the housing market recovery is gaining steam."
While the number of new homes sold in August was barely changed from July, the median sales price was up sharply, the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development report. So the news adds to other recent signs, including Tuesday's report about higher home prices in major cities, of a recovering housing sector.