(RTTNews) – The total number of building permits issued in New Zealand was up a seasonally adjusted 35.6 percent on month in May, Statistics New Zealand said on Wednesday – coming in at 3,554.

That follows the downwardly revised 9.9 percent decline in April (originally -6.5 percent).

The strong May month was partly driven by consents for 1,926 new stand-alone houses, which is up a seasonally adjusted 16 percent from April and marks the biggest monthly increase since December 2002.

The other driving factor for May’s increase is the record 959 new townhouses, flats, and units consented.

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