New housing starts across the nation outperformed experts’ expectations in February, reports the Financial Post, but the modest increase did not sway economists’ expectations of a cooling housing market.
A data release from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp (CMHC) shows that housing starts increased to 192,094 units last month, a 6.45 per cent increase over January's total of 180,481. That topped analysts’ prior expectations of an increase to 189,500.
Market activity was down during January due to inclement weather conditions. The resurgence in February suggests that some of the weather-related issues are becoming less of a factor in the market’s performance.
According to the CMHC’s six-month moving average, new builds checked in at 192,236 units. The average total has fluctuated between 185,000 and 195,000 since August 2013, which is in line with CMHC’s forecast for a stable housing market in 2014.
In recent years, economists have warned consumers about an impending U.S.-style crash occurring in Canada, but the nation has yet to see such a correction. The federal government intervened four times to tighten mortgage rules, which has helped the market maintain its level of stability
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