Canadian housing starts soar past expectations


New home construction rose more than expected in June, led by a jump in single-unit activity, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. said Monday.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts was 197,400 units last month, up 1.7 per cent from a revised 194,100 units in May, CMHC said. The April figure was also revised to 194,100 units.

Economists had expected between 184,000 to 185,000 starts in June.

"Housing starts increased in June due to an increase in single and multiple starts in Ontario," said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC's Market Analysis Centre. "The revised numbers show that housing starts have been above their trend line since March. However, we expect housing starts to move back towards levels consistent with demographic fundamentals in the near term."

Urban construction rose 2.2 per cent to 174,600 units in June, with single-unit starts up 11.1 per cent to 70,900, while multiple-unit starts declined 3.1 per cent to 103,700.

Urban starts in Ontario jumped 24.1 per cent in Ontario and by 5.6 per cent in the Atlantic region. Meanwhile, British Columbia saw a 27.6 per cent drop in June, while urban construction fell 3.6 per cent in Quebec and 1.2 per cent in the Prairie region.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of rural starts was 22,800 units, down from 23,300 units the previous month.

Source: The Financial Post

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