US home construction fell in November after October surge

WASHINGTON (AP) - Builders pulled back on constructing homes in November, after ground breakings surged in October to the strongest pace in more than nine years.

The Commerce Department says housing starts fell 18.7 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted 1.09 million. The decline likely reflected a natural regression after home construction soared 27 percent to 1.34 million homes in October.

Housing starts tend to extremely volatile on a monthly basis, but ground breakings have risen 4.8 percent so far this year. Most of the gains have come from single-family houses, as apartment construction has slipped.

Building permits fell 4.7 percent last month to an annual rate of 1.20 million.

A stable job market has pushed up demand for homes, while low mortgage rates have also contributed to increasing buying activity.