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August 2010 housing numbers

I’ll begin with David Rosenberg’s take on Canadian housing data for August 2010


Existing home sales jumped 4.1% MoM in August, barely making a dent in the four-month string of declines. Even with the increase, the level of sales remains close to lows seen in early 2009. The data have been noisy of late because of the introduction of the HST. We expect the data over the next few months to reflect the fundamental slowing in the housing market.

If you look through the volatility, it’s clear that it’s too early to say that the Canadian housing market has turned any sort of a corner. On a year-over-year basis, sales are down nearly 20%, the third month of double-digit declines. Inventories of unsold homes remain high (inched down slightly to 6.9 months’ supply in August from 7.0 months) suggesting it still remains a buyers’ market. While the Canadian Real Estate Association was quick to point out that prices were “stable”, we must note that the flat year-over-year rate is the weakest since April 2009. In our view, we could see year-over-year comparisons turn negative as early as September.

Some numbers to support David’s view:

August 2010
Average Resale Price $324,928
Year-over-Year Price Change 0% ($324,843)
Month-over-Month Price Change -1.64%
Change vs 2009 1.43%
Change vs 2008 6.54%

Last month i.e. in July 2010, prices were down 3.6% from June 2010.

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