The total number of building permits issued in New Zealand dropped a seasonally adjusted 8.2 percent on month in January, Statistics New Zealand said on Monday – coming in at 1,695.

That followed the 2.3 percent increase in December.

In January, there were 1,286 permits issued for houses, 89 for apartments, 135 for retirement village units and 185 for townhouses, flats, and unit.

Nationally, the number of new dwellings consented in January was almost unchanged from a year earlier. Increases in nine regions were offset by a large decrease in Canterbury.

“While January is usually a quiet month for building consents, Canterbury had the lowest January number in five years,” business indicators senior manager Neil Kelly said.

The Canterbury trend for new dwellings peaked in September 2014, following three-and-a-half years of sustained growth. The trend has been falling for the last 16 months.

The actual value of overall building work consented in January was NZ$1.1 billion.

On a yearly basis, residential work was up NZ$112 million (17 percent) to NZ$756 million, while non-residential work was down NZ$43 million (12 percent) to NZ$310 million.

Also on Monday, the latest survey from ANZ Bank showed that business confidence in New Zealand declined in February with an index score of 7.1.

That’s down sharply from 23.0 in January.

The survey also showed that the activity outlook slipped to 25.5 from 34.4 in the previous month.

The expectation for inflation fell to 1.39 percent from 1.64 a month earlier.

The material has been provided by InstaForex Company –