Construction on new homes and apartments plummeted in May to its lowest rate in nearly a year, according to a government report.

The Commerce Department announced that new projects dropped 3.9 percent to 1.592 million units from the April figure of 1.656 million units. New construction topped in February with 1.822 million units after rebounding from its previous low of 1.562 million units in June last year.

The Commerce Department also confirmed that for the fourth consecutive month, building permit applications fell 4.3 percent to 1.492 million.