Canada Housing December 2019


Canada: Housing starts edge lower in December

January 9, 2020

Housing starts decreased to 197,329 units on a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) basis in December, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), down from November’s revised 204,320-unit reading (previously reported: 201,318), and well below analysts’ expectations of 210,200 units. December’s fall was driven by a sharp fall in multiple urban starts, which was only marginally offset by a slight increase in single-detached urban starts.

Meanwhile, the six-month average of housing starts on a SAAR basis fell to 212,160 units in December from 219,921 units in November.

Going forward, solid population growth, lower borrowing costs, increased government measures supporting first-time home buyers, robust wage growth and a tight labor market should continue to drive housing starts.

In its annual Housing Market Outlook released in October, the CMHC projected housing starts would range between 194,000–204,300 units in 2020 and between 192,900–206,300 units in 2021. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants, meanwhile, expect 206,000 housing starts in 2020, before moderating to 200,000 units in 2021.

Author:, Economist

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Canada Housing Chart

Canada Housing Starts December 2019

Note: Monthly housing starts and six-month trend in monthly housing starts, both at seasonally-adjusted annualized rate.
Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

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