The U.S. Commerce Department released the housing market data on Tuesday. Housing starts in the U.S. dropped 17.0% to 897,000 annualized rate in February from a 1.081 million pace in January, missing expectations for a decrease to 1.050 million. It was the lowest level since January 2014.
January's figure was revised up from 1.065 million units.
The decline was driven by bad weather in the U.S.
Building permits in the U.S. increased 3.0% to 1.092 million annualized rate in February from a 1.06 million pace in January. Analysts had expected building permits to climb to 1.07 million units.
Starts of single-family homes dropped 14.9% to 539,000 units in February. Building permits for single-family homes declined 6.2% to 620,000 units.
Starts of multifamily buildings plunged 20.8% to 304,000 units in February. Permits for multi-family housing increased 18.3% to 472,000 units.