Economy US housing starts rise, but underlying trend weak Updated : November 21, 2018 05:35 AM IST Building permits fell 0.6 percent to a rate of 1.263 million units in October. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast housing starts rising to a 1.225 million-unit pace last month. The struggling housing market is in stark contrast with the broader economy, which has enjoyed two straight quarters of robust growth and an unemployment rate at a near 49-year low of 3.7 percent. Subscribe to Moneycontrol PRO at just Rs.33/- per month for the first year. Use code SUPERPRO. Limited period offer. Available on Web and Android.