WASHINGTON (AP) -- Housing construction shot up 7.1 percent in December, the biggest jump in more than a year, despite rising mortgage rates, capping the best year for builders since 1986.
The Commerce Department said today that builders began work on new units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.71 million units last month. That was the largest monthly increase in housing starts since a 7.7 percent gain in October 1998.
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