ECONOMY

US home construction jumps, led by more apartment building

U.S. builders ramped up home construction in December, led by a surge of apartment building, while single-family houses lagged.

The Commerce Department says housing starts jumped 11.3 percent last month, after a sharp fall in November and big gain in October. Apartment construction, which can be volatile month to month, soared 53.9 percent.

The figures cap a modestly healthy 2016 for home construction, with single-family home building up 3.9 percent and apartment building 10.3 percent higher.