In October the Teranet–National Bank National Composite House Price IndexTM was down 1.0% from the previous month, a second consecutive monthly decline and the largest since September 2010. The retreat was due to a 2.8% drop of the index for the Toronto market, the country’s largest. Indexes were also down on the month for five other metropolitan areas of the composite index: Hamilton (−1.8%), Edmonton (−0.7%), Winnipeg (−0.7%), Ottawa-Gatineau (−0.3%) and Calgary (−0.2%). Indexes were up on the month for Halifax (1.3%), Vancouver (0.7%), Quebec City (0.6%), Montreal (0.4%) and Victoria (0.1%). For Toronto’s index it was the third straight monthly decline and for Hamilton’s the second, in both cases following 18 consecutive monthly gains. The declines of the Calgary and Edmonton indexes ended runs of six monthly gains, that of the Ottawa-Gatineau index a run of five gains. The Vancouver, Victoria and Montreal indexes were at record highs in October.
The raw index for Toronto fell 1.1% in October, markedly less than in August and September. The cumulative drop from the June peak was 8.5%. This retreat is quite consistent with recent loosening of conditions in the Toronto market. Since this loosening has consisted of a shift from a very tight to a balanced market, current market conditions are far from those typical of an economic recession.
The index for Vancouver dropped after the August 2016 implementation of a tax on acquisitions by foreigners. But the market remained tight and by the beginning of this year the index had regained the lost ground. It has risen to new records in each of the last six months. Victoria’s has risen to a new record for an eighth straight month.
- Composite 11
- All Metropolitan Indices
- British Columbia
Among 14 markets not included in the countrywide composite index, indexes were down on the month for all but one of the 12 in Ontario, the exception being Kingston.
In October the composite index was up 10.0% from a year earlier, the smallest 12-month rise since June 2016. It was the third consecutive deceleration from the record 12-month gains of 14.2% in both June and July. The October 12-month rise was led by Toronto (13.4%), Hamilton (15.7%), Vancouver (12.0%) and Victoria (14.4%). With this result Vancouver has rejoined the ranks of markets whose indexes have risen more than the countrywide average. The 12-month advance was much smaller in Montreal (6.5%), Ottawa-Gatineau (5.0%), Halifax (1.9%), Calgary (1.8%), Edmonton (0.8%), Quebec City (0.6%) and Winnipeg (0.1%).
Index values were up from a year earlier in all 14 of the markets not included in the composite index, though the 12-month increase ranged widely – from 1.0% in Thunder Bay to 23.6% in St. Catharines–Niagara.
*Note on methodology: The current-month data used to calculate the index are those of closed sales registered in the provincial land registry. To illustrate the home price trend, the published indexes of the 11 metropolitan markets entering into the Teranet–National Bank Composite House Price Index™ are moving averages of the last three months of raw indexes, a procedure that evens out month-to-month fluctuations. More granular monthly data are available upon request, subject to subscription fees. For our full methodology, please visit www.housepriceindex.ca
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Economics and Strategy Group
National Bank of Canada