The rate of new home construction in the United States exceeded analysts' expectations and rose in June by 14.6 percent to an annualized rate of 629,000 units, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.

The figure exceeded the calculations of most analysts, which was for the annualized rate to come in at 580,000 units.

The June rate was the highest monthly housing starts figure since January.

Housing starts for single family homes rose 9.4 percent in June to 453,000 units per year, and the construction of apartment buildings jumped 31.8 percent to an annual rate of 170,000 units.

Building permits, which serve as an indicator of future activity, increased last month by 2.5 percent to an annualized rate of 624,000, the highest since last December.