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HOUSING STARTS DOWN 1.1 PERCENT IN OCTOBER

 WASHINGTON, Nov. 19 ~PRNewswire~ -- New housing starts fell 1.1 percent in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,229,000, the Commerce Department reported today.
 Although housing starts are expected to rise 18 percent this year to 1.2 million units, this is still far below rebounds reported during previous recessions, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).
 "The year following the 1981-82 recession, housing starts jumped 60 percent to 1.7 million units," said NAHB President Robert "Jay" Buchert. "Overall, we are experiencing a very modest recovery."
 Pent-up consumer demand as a result of the recession aftermath and the underlying need for affordable housing show there is still plenty of room for additional growth in the housing market, according to Buchert.
 "An economic stimulus program is needed to get housing and the economy moving forward again," he said. "With the housing industry still operating well below capacity, tapping this tremendous resource as part of an economic growth program is a key test for the incoming Clinton Administration."
 Regionally, the housing market remains soft in the Northeast and West, where new home construction registered 127,000 units and 284,000 units respectively, down 28 percent from 1989. Housing starts totaled 511,000 units in the South, down 5 percent from 1989. The only region to post an increase from 1989 is the Midwest, up 15 percent at 307,000.
 NAHB is forecasting the construction of 1,026,000 single-family homes and 174,000 multifamily starts in 1992. NAHB projects a total of 1.32 million starts in 1993, including 1,118,000 single-family and 202,000 multifamily units.
 -0- 11~19~92
 ~CONTACT: Jay Shackford of the National Association of Home Builders, 202-822-0406~


CO: National Association of Home Builders ST: District of Columbia IN: SU: ECO

DC -- DC016 -- 2958 11~19~92 13:51 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 19, 1992
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