Canada Housing May 2016


Housing starts fall again in May

Seasonally-adjusted annualized housing starts registered 188,600 units in May, according to the government-owned Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The figure marked a 1.5% decrease over April’s revised 191,400 units (previously reported: +191,500 units) and undershot market expectations of an increase of 190,000 units. May’s decrease followed April’s 5.2% decrease.

The six-month moving average fell by 2.0% over the previous month, from April’s 195,000 to 191,000 in May. The CMHC commented that, “housing starts slowed in May, and are now on pace to reach 191,000 units in Canada — falling within the upper range of our housing market outlook forecast for the year. The decline we see in the trend is led by fewer multiple starts in urban areas, particularly in larger centres like Toronto.”

According to its Q2 Housing Market Outlook, the CMHC estimates that housing starts will record between 181,300 and 192,300 units in 2016 and between 176,600 and 183,000 units in 2017. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect 187,133 housing starts in 2016. For 2017, the panel sees housing starts moderating to 176,600 units.

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Canada Housing Chart

Canada Housing Starts May 2016

Note: Monthly housing starts at seasonally-adjusted annualized rate.
Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

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