Building consents rise slightly in March from Feb, but trend is still downward

Building consents rise slightly in March from Feb, but trend is still downward
The number of building consents issued for dwelling units rose slightly in March from February, as a rise in non-apartment consents covered for a 46% drop in apartment consents, figures from Statistics New Zealand (Stats NZ) show. There were 1,091 consents issued for dwellings over the month, still down 30% from March 2008. The number of apartment consents fell from 193 in February to 104 in March. The latest figure was 50% higher than apartment consents issued in March 2008, but down almost 50% from March 2007. The amount of non-apartment dwelling consents issued rose to 987 in March from 866 in February. However this was still down 37% from the 1,517 consents issued in March 2008. Despite the rise in unadjusted figures, Stats NZ said that the seasonally adjusted trend for dwelling consents had fallen more than 50% since June 2007. Seasonally adjusted, dwelling consents fell 4.6% from February, and were down 34.5% from March 2008.  The rise in the amount of dwelling consents issued was led by a surge in the Auckland region, back up to the March 2008 level at 315. This was up 43% from February. In Wellington, after a jump in apartment consents in February, total consents fell 70% in March to 64, also down 43% from March 2008. Consents rose 43% to 209 in the Canterbury region in March from February, but were still down 15% from March 2008.

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