According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) in December the trend in Canadian housing starts was at 239,052 units, up from 236,334 units in November. The trend measure is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted rates (SAAR) of housing starts. The standalone monthly SAAR of housing starts for all areas in Canada excluding Kelowna CMA decreased by -12.2% in December from November. The SAAR of urban starts decreased by -12.8% in December. Multiple urban starts decreased by -15.1% while single-detached urban starts decreased by 5.5%. Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 22,373 units. In remarks prepared for the December trend release, Bob Duggan, CHMC’s chief economist said, “The national trend in housing starts increased in December 2020. Following pandemic-induced declines in early-2020, the trend in total housing starts has registered steady gains since May 2020. Despite the on-going pandemic, these gains leave the year-end 2020 SAAR of total starts above the 2019 annual total.”
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Canadian housing starts trended higher in December