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Housing starts slow in 2014

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Blog by Randy Miller | February 12th, 2014

Here are the hightlights from last weeks TD-Economics report:
  • Employment in Canada rebounded by 29,000 net jobs in January, with all the job gains concentrated in full-time positions. The unemployment rate decreased to 7.0% from 7.2%.
  • Canada’s trade deficit came in at $1.7 billion in December, widening from the downwardly revised Novem­ber deficit of $1.5 billion. Imports (+1.2%) advanced at a faster rate than exports (+0.9%). The 2013Q4 readings suggest that net exports will likely be a drag on real GDP growth in the fourth quarter.
  • The Canadian dollar appreciated by almost one U.S. cent this week, after falling below 90 U.S. cents last week for the first time since August 2009. The Canadian dollar is expected to hit 85 cents U.S. by mid 2014.

Housing starts are likely to have begun 2014 on a shakier footing, with the headline figure forecast to slip to 178k annualized units in January. A portion of this weakness can be attributed to the combination of inclement weather and colder-than normal temperatures across much of the coun­try. There also appears to be a more fundamental cooling in construction activity in keeping with the steady decline in residential building permits. Multiple unit projects have been particularly affected and are at risk of falling below 100k annualized units. Single unit starts could also slow towards a 55k unit pace. In smoothing through the monthly volatility the January forecast would cut the six-month mov­ing average to 190k. While still ahead of demographically-supported levels, the trend in starts is forecast to slow over the course of the year and will place more pressure on net exports to support the next leg of the recovery in the Ca­nadian economy.

To read the full report, click here

You may also be interested in this article: Housing starts slow out of the gate in January

For information on the local market, please contact me.

Randy Miller
Sales Representative
Re/Max Rouge River Realty Ltd., Brokerage
905-668-1800 or 905-427-1400