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US housing starts total 1.172M in April, vs 1.26M starts expected

Construction of new homes fell for a second straight month in April, pushing activity to the lowest point in five months.

The Commerce Department says housing starts fell 2.6 percent in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million units. That followed a 6.6 per cent decline in March and left home building at its lowest point since last November. The weakness was led by a big drop in construction of apartments, a volatile sector.

Housing construction has been one of the bright spots for the economy. Analysts expect that the number of Americans seeking homes will rebound in coming months, driven by strong employment gains and low unemployment.