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January housing data reveals mixed results


February 8, 2013
By Aggregates and Roadbuilding

February 8, 2013, Ottawa, Ont. —
Housing starts in Canada were trending at 203,208 units in January, according
to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month
moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of
housing starts.

February 8, 2013, Ottawa, Ont. —
Housing starts in Canada were trending at 203,208 units in January, according
to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month
moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of
housing starts.


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“The
trend in total housing starts has been moderating since September 2012 and
in existing home sales since May 2012. Trends in the two market segments
typically follow a similar pattern with the new home market lagging behind the
existing home market by a few months,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief
Economist at CMHC. “The current trend is also in line with CMHC’s housing
market outlook, which calls for moderation in housing starts activity in 2013.”


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 160,577 units in January, down from 197,118 in
December. The SAAR of urban starts decreased by 22.3 per cent in
January to 138,134 units. Single urban starts decreased by
11.2 per cent to 59,318 units and multiple urban starts
decreased by 28.9 per cent to 78,816 units.


January’s
seasonally adjusted annual rates of urban starts decreased in Ontario (-­43.9
per cent), Quebec (-29.6 per cent) and in the Prairies
(-5.9 per cent). Urban starts increased in Atlantic Canada
(+59.4 per cent) and in British Columbia (+7.7 per cent).


Rural
starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 22,443 units
in January.

Preliminary
housing starts data is also available in English and French at the following
link: Preliminary Housing Starts Tables.


As
Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of
experience to help Canadians access a variety of high quality, environmentally
sustainable and affordable housing solutions. CMHC also provides reliable,
impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to
support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making informed
decisions.


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