Housing starts increased in November to their highest since April 2010, led by a three-year high in multi-family units. The Commerce Department announced on Tuesday that housing starts last month jumped 9.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 685,000 units. October’s starts were revised down to a 627,000-unit pace from a previously reported 628,000. Construction on multi-family units like apartments and townhouses is surging as more people are unable to afford single-family houses. Work on multifamily homes surged 25 percent to an annual rate of 238,000, the highest level since September 2008.
Investor Insights: Are Investors Taking Advantage of Lower Gold Prices?
The U.S. dollar (NYSE:UUP) declined as Spanish short-term financing costs fell sharply. On Tuesday, the Spanish Treasury sold 3.7 billion euros of 3-month paper for 1.735 percent, compared to an average yield of 5.11 percent in November, at a bid-to-cover ratio of 2.9, up from 2.8.
Along with the broad market, precious metals (NYSEARCA:DBP) surged on Tuesday. In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) gained 1.36 percent, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) climbed 2.79 percent higher. Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) gained 2.89 percent, while Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) jumped 4.41 percent. Although it has underperformed this year, shares of the Market Vectors Jr. Gold Miners ETF (NYSEARCA:GDXJ) surged more than 7.41%. Silver miners (NYSEARCA:SIL) such as Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) and Endeavour Silver (NYSE:EXK) jumped more than 6 percent, while First Majestic (NYSE:AG) gained 4.08 percent.
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