Housing starts in Québec's urban centres were trending at 34,112 units in February, compared to 31,433 in January, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.
''The housing starts rate hike observed in February is explained by developments in certain large apartment construction sites, notably in downtown Montréal. As work continues on other such sites, more occasional shifts of similar magnitude will occur during the course of this year'' said Kevin Hughes, CMHC Regional Economist for the province of Quebec.
CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of the state of the housing market. In some situations, analyzing only SAAR data can be misleading in some markets, as they are largely driven by the multiples segment of the markets, which can be quite variable from one month to the next.
The stand-alone monthly SAAR was 46,330 units in February, up from 27,419 in January.