Surprise record low crushes widespread hopes of upturn in housebuilding

A surprise dip in US housing construction figures has rocked hopes that the economy could be starting to recover.

New figures yesterday showed a massive 12.8% fall in the construction of homes and apartments in the US – the lowest on record for over 50 years.

US-style home
Construction of homes and apartments has hit a 50-year low

Analysts had expected housing starts to rise so the record low came as a shock, as many investors were hoping to see evidence of a recovery in the housing construction sector.