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Housing Starts Move Higher in October

OTTAWA, Ontario, November 8, 2006 — The seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts rose to 223,200 units in October, from 209,000 units in September, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

“The rise in housing starts in October reflects a rebound in the volatile multiple starts segment, which registered a two-year low in September,” said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. “Single starts, the bellwether component of the new home market, fell to their second lowest level of the year.”

“Despite the increase in October, the pace of housing starts has been slower since August compared to the first half of 2006. This is consistent with our view that residential construction will decrease gradually between now and the end of 2007.”

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts increased 8.3 per cent to 191,700 units in October compared to the previous month. Urban multiples rose 23 per cent to 99,900 units in October, while singles decreased 4.2 per cent to 91,800 units.

Urban starts increased in three out of five regions in October compared to September. Higher start levels were recorded in Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario where urban starts were up 28.2 per cent,10 per cent and 9.7 per cent, respectively. The increase in these regions was entirely due to an increase in urban multiple starts. Indeed, urban single starts were down in all regions except British Columbia, where they were unchanged in October. Urban starts decreased 6.4 per cent and 15.7 per cent in the Prairie and Atlantic regions, respectively.

Rural starts in October were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 31,500 units.

For the first ten months of 2006, total actual starts in all urban and rural areas across Canada increased 1.6 per cent compared to a year ago. Looking only at urban areas, the year-to-date increase in housing starts was slightly lower at 1.3 per cent. Both year-to-date actual urban single starts and actual urban multiple starts rose compared to the same period in 2005, by 1.6 per cent and 1.1 per cent, respectively.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada’s national housing agency for more than 60 years. CMHC is committed to helping Canadians access a wide choice of quality, affordable homes, while making vibrant, healthy communities and cities a reality across the country. For more information, call 1-800-668-2642.

1All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) — that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels.

Information on this release:

Bob Dugan

For regional starts information contact:

Atlantic provinces
Alex MacDonald

Kevin Hughes

Ted Tsiakopoulos

Prairie provinces
Richard Corriveau

British Columbia
Carol Frketich

Housing Starts Move Higher in October

Housing Starts, Actual and SAAR*

Actual SAAR
Final Preliminary Final Preliminary
Canada, all areas 19,419 20,174 209,000 223,200
Canada, rural areas 3,198 2,992 32,000 31,500
Canada, urban centres** 16,221 17,182 177,000 191,700
Canada, singles, urban centres 8,123 7,978 95,800 91,800
Canada, multiples, urban centres 8,098 9,204 81,200 99,900
Atlantic region, urban centres 857 596 8,300 7,000
Quebec, urban centres 3,567 4,189 35,400 45,400
Ontario, urban centres 5,227 5,948 59,500 65,300
Prairie region, urban centres 3,647 3,616 43,900 41,100
British Columbia, urban centres 2,923 2,833 29,900 32,900

Source: CMHC
*Seasonally adjusted annual rates
** Urban centres with a population of 10,000 persons and over.
Detailed data available upon request.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)


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