30 Nov 2012

Building consents slip in recovery from a low base

10:36 pm on 30 November 2012

An economist says the house building market is continuing to recover gradually, despite slipping last month.

New figures from Statistics New Zealand show the number of new house consents last month was the highest for any month in more than four years.

Councils issued 1639 consents for new houses and apartments in October, the highest number since May 2008.

On a seasonally-adjusted basis, consents actually dropped 1.5% to just over 1500 in October compared with the previous month;but Statistics New Zealand says there is still a clear upward trend over the past 19 months.

Compared with October last year, the number of consents rose by 32%.

Westpac senior economist, Michael Gordon says that though consents are at a four year high, it's coming off a low base.