• Kyodo News

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Housing starts in May fell 4.6 percent from a year earlier to 59,911 units, marking the first decline in two months amid severe employment and income conditions, the government said Wednesday.

Starts of owner-occupied houses rose 4.8 percent to 24,243 units for the seventh consecutive monthly rise, according to the land ministry.

In terms of rental houses, starts dropped 13.5 percent to 21,759 units for the 18th consecutive monthly decline.

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