The US housing market continues to suffer as a direct result of the problems in the sub-prime mortgage sector, with the rate of new houses being built falling to a 16-year low. Daily Telegraph, Guardian

Statistics from the US Commerce Department show that work beginning on the construction of a residential dwelling — fell to an annual rate of 1.187m units in November. For houses the rate is down 5.4pc to an annual rate of 829,000, the lowest since April 1991.