Japan Housing Starts Drop In May

Japan’s housing starts dropped for the first time in three months in May but the pace of decline was slower than expected, data from the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism showed Friday.

Housing starts dropped 0.3 percent on a yearly basis in May, reversing a 1.9 percent rise in April. This was the first fall in three months. Economists had forecast a 0.7 percent decline.

The number of housing starts declined to 998,000 from 1 million units in April. It was expected to fall to 986,000.

Data showed that construction orders received by 50 big contractors declined for the second straight month. Orders decreased 0.5 percent, following a 0.2 percent fall in April.

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