Once again the data will take a back seat this session. This is Feb data, which is dated given the outbreak impact began to reaklly accelerate the following month.

Permits are a guide to the work in the construction pipeline and are worth eyeing for that, but given the virus weight on the economy some of the permits granted during in February will not result in building work ahead.

The data:

+4.7% m/m

  • prior -2.0%

and +11% y/y

On the brighter side, these are strong results and any work not commenced as noted in the paragraph above will at least be coming off a high base.

Stats NZ comment:

  • The number of new homes consented in the February 2020 year is the highest in about 45 years, boosted by more new homes for Auckland,"
  • "Building consent statistics may be affected in the coming months by the current lock-down because of COVID-19. However, any delay to or cancellation of already consented building plans would be seen in the quarterly value of building work put in place, not in monthly consent statistics," Ms McKenzie said.