Canada Housing Starts Slow in November on Condo Weakness

Canadian housing starts (CAHSTOTL) slowed in November as construction of multiple-unit projects such as condominiums fell.

Starts totaled 192,235 at a seasonally adjusted annual pace in November, down from 198,161 the previous month, Ottawa-based Canada Mortgage & Housing Corp. said on its website today. Economists forecast a reading of 195,000 according to the median of 13 responses to a Bloomberg News survey.

The “sideways trend” of housing construction suggests it won’t contribute to growth in gross domestic product in the fourth quarter, CIBC World Markets economist Emanuella Enenajor said in a research note.

The Bank of Canada is weighing evidence of a sluggish economic recovery against concerns low interest rates may overheat the nation’s housing market. Housing has been stronger than expected, central bank policy makers said Dec. 4 as they kept the benchmark lending rate at 1 percent, where it’s been for more than three years.

Urban multiple unit starts fell 3.5 percent to 111,036 units in November, CMHC said, while single urban starts dropped 3.1 percent to 60,311.

To contact the reporters on this story: Greg Quinn in Ottawa at gquinn1@bloomberg.net; Andrew Mayeda in Ottawa at amayeda@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Wellisz at cwellisz@bloomberg.net

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