GTA housing starts indicate strengthening economy – CMHC

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Housing starts in the Toronto, Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending at 34,218 units in July compared to 31,733 in June according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) (1) of housing starts.

“Total housing starts reflect a continuing increase in employment, indicating that the overall economic environment is strengthening in Toronto,” said Edgard Navarrete, CMHC’s Toronto market analyst.

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, analysing 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 variable from one month to the next.

The standalone monthly SAAR was 31,496 units in July, down from 34,759 in June.

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 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.

Follow CMHC on Twitter @CMHC_ca.

(1) All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts and the trend estimate, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) – that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels. By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment allows for a comparison from one season to the next and from one month to the next. Reporting monthly figures at annual rates indicates the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the monthly pace was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.

A table and a graph are available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/891357-eng.pdf

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