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U.S. Housing Starts Rise More Than Forecast While Permits Slump

U.S. new-home construction rose more than forecast to a three-month high in August, while permits unexpectedly saw the biggest drop since February 2017, adding to signs that homebuilding is struggling to stabilize, government figures showed Wednesday.

The data show persistent crosswinds for housing. While starts recovered after two straight declines, homebuilding permits signaled weakness in coming months. The decline in authorizations was broad-based with the single-family segment dropping 6.1 percent, the most in seven years, and multifamily permits falling 4.9 percent for a fifth-consecutive decrease.