US housing starts surged 30% in June
Housing starts jumped 30 percent in June, the Commerce Department reported Thursday, indicating that one of the areas of the economy hardest hit by recession has started to recover. Builders began new private housing units last month at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,191,000, the department said, up from a revised figure of only 913,000 in May. The rate of housing starts had been declining fairly steadily from a rate of 1.9 million units in June a year ago. Issuance of building permits -- an indication of construction starts to come -- also was up, by 28 percent.