Housing starts fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.092 million in May, 5.5% below the revised April rate of 1.156 million and 2.4% below the May 2016 rate.
Housing activity increased 1.3% in the West and remained at the same level in the Northeast. The Midwest and South experienced declines of 9.2% and 8.8%, respectively.
New building permits decreased during the month, falling 4.9% to 1.168 million. Permits were down 0.8% from the May 2016 rate.
Housing completions were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.164 million, up 5.6% from the revised April estimate and 14.6% above the May 2016 rate.
Read the Census release.