US home construction fell in November, as the recent recovery paused in the troubled sector, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.
Privately owned housing starts last month dropped 3.0 percent below the revised October estimate of 888,000 to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 861,000.
The monthly drop was below the average analyst forecast of 875,000. However, the results are 21.6 percent above the November 2011 pace of 708,000.
New building permits for privately owned housing units, which signal potential future homebuilding, rose 3.6 percent compared to October's revised 868,000, coming in at a seasonally adjusted rate of 899,000. On average, analysts had expected 876,000.
The results are also 26.8 percent above the estimate for the November 2011 estimate of 709,000.
"Despite the decline, housing starts... stand at their second highest level since July 2008," said analysts with Barclays Research.
"Permit activity suggests the upward momentum in the pace of start activity can continue in the months ahead."
In recent months, data has indicated the US housing recovery from the 2006 collapse of a price bubble is gaining traction, with sales and prices picking up.