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Housing construction drops in February

WASHINGTON (AP) — Severe winter weather in much of the country pushed home construction down a sharp 10.3% in February while applications for new construction fell by 10.8%.

The decline pushed home and apartment construction down to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,42 million units last month, compared to a rate of 1.58 million units in January when housing starts had fallen 5.1 percent, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday.

Even with the two months of declines, economists are optimistic that housing will bounce back in coming months, helped by ultra-low mortgage rates and rising demand by American who have been cooped up for the past year as the coronavirus pandemic rages.

However, even with the expected rebound, the growth in housing will likely slow from last year’s sizzling pace.

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