Post Category: Research
August 12, 2016
Canada: House prices climbed 2.0% in July

OPINION: In July, the dichotomy in the Canadian home resale market continued, with large monthly gains in the four metropolitan areas (Vancouver, Toronto, Victoria and Hamilton) that have been driving the national index recently. Apart from these four regions, prices have overall been flat over the last 12 months (top chart). Vancouver has been in a league of its own, with monthly price rises above 2% in each of the last six months. That sequence saw a surge in condos prices as well as for other types of dwellings (left panel middle chart). Some observers believe that prices are going to cool in Vancouver based on last July’s 19% drop in home sales on a y/y basis and to the implementation of a 15% property transfer tax on foreigners purchases of residential real estate. However, despite the drop in existing home sales, the Vancouver resale market remains tight (middle chart – right panel). Furthermore, the labour market in Vancouver is red hot, with employment having risen 7.4% on a y/y basis (bottom chart). These two factors provide support to house prices. The story is not solely about alleged foreign capital flows.

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