Housing starts fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.215 million in March, 6.8% below the revised February rate of 1.303 million, but 9.2% above the March 2016 rate.
Housing activity increased in only one out of the four regions as the Northeast saw housing starts jump 12.9%. The West, Midwest, and South experienced declines of 16.0%, 16.2%, and 2.9%, respectively.
New building permits increased during the month, rising 3.6% to 1.260 million. Permits were up 17.0% from the March 2016 rate.
Housing completions were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.205 million, up 3.2% from the revised February estimate and 13.4% above the March 2016 rate.
Read the Census release.