Canadian Contractor

Steve Payne   

Housing starts 'stable' for the sixth straight month in August, CMHC reports

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There were 187,197 housing starts in Canada in August, compared to 187,324 in July, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMCH) says

The following is a press release from the CMHC:

Housing starts in Canada were trending at 187,197 units in August compared to 187,324 in July, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR)1 of housing starts.


“The trend in total housing starts continued to be relatively stable for a sixth consecutive month, remaining within a narrow range of roughly 182,000 to 188,000 units since March 2013. This is in line with our forecasts,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC.


CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of the state of the housing market. In some situations analyzing only SAAR data can be misleading in some markets, as they are largely driven by the multiples segment of the markets which can be quite volatile from one month to the next.


The standalone monthly SAAR was 180,291 units in August, down from 193,021 in July. The SAAR of urban starts decreased by 5.8 per cent in August to 163,102 units, mostly reflecting a decline in the multiple starts segments in August. Specifically, multiple urban starts decreased by 8.4 per cent to 104,704 units in August while the single urban starts segment registered a slight decline of 0.9 per cent to 58,398 units.


In August, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased in Ontario, held steady in Atlantic Canada while  decreasing in all other regions, including the Prairies, British Columbia and Quebec.


Rural startswere estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 17,189 units.


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