Housing starts fell in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.089 million, 8.8% below February’s revised estimate of 1.194 million; though, 14.2% above the March 2015 rate. Housing starts have remained above the 1.0 million rate for 12 consecutive months.
Housing activity fell in three of the four regions, with starts decreasing 15.7% in the West, 25.4% in the Midwest and 8.4% in the South. Starts rose sharply in the Northeast however, rising by 61.3%.
New building permits dropped during the month, falling 7.7% below February’s rate to 1.086 million, but grew 4.6% from March 2015.
Housing completions rose in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.061 million, 3.5 points above February’s rate, and up 31.6 points from a year ago.