The Teranet–National Bank National Composite House Price IndexTM was unchanged in March – the first time outside a recession when the March composite index was not up at least 0.2 percentage points from February and the first time outside a recession when March indexes were up for only four of the 11 metropolitan markets of the composite index – Victoria (1.0%), Vancouver (0.5%), Winnipeg (0.5%) and Quebec City (0.1%). The index for Toronto was flat. Indexes for the other six markets were all down on the month: Montreal −0.2%, Hamilton −0.3%, Calgary −0.4%, Ottawa-Gatineau −0.7%, Halifax −1.0%, Edmonton −1.3%.
The rise of the Vancouver index was the 13th in 15 months, taking it to a new high. In recent months its gains have been smaller, consistent with the relaxation of the market reported by the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board. The Toronto index is down 7.3% from its peak of last July. The raw (unsmoothed) Toronto index has declined a similar 7.9% over that period, though its condo segment is unchanged from July – all other types of housing taken together are down 10.4%. The index for neighbouring Hamilton has declined in six of the last seven months, for a cumulative 5.9% drop from its August peak. The Ottawa-Gatineau index has declined in five of the last six months and is down 2.4% from its September peak. The Calgary and Edmonton indexes are also down from six months ago.
- Composite 11
- All Metropolitan Indices
- British Columbia
- New Brunswick
- Nova Scotia
Because of the rise of the composite index from March to August last year, its reading for March 2018 was up 6.6% from a year earlier. This is the smallest 12-month rise since May 2016 and a ninth consecutive deceleration from the record 14.2% of last June. The March 12-month rise of the composite index was exceeded only by the indexes for Vancouver (15.4%) and Victoria (12.5%), which were followed by Halifax (6.1%), Hamilton (5.9%), Toronto (4.3%), Montreal (4.3%), Ottawa-Gatineau (3.0%), Winnipeg (2.9%), Calgary(0.4%) and Edmonton (0.2%). The Quebec City index was down 0.4% from a year earlier.
Indexes exist for seven Golden Horseshoe markets outside Toronto and Hamilton. Six of them – Barrie, Guelph, Brantford, Kitchener, St. Catharines and Oshawa – were down from last July, the exception being Peterborough. Indexes not included in the composite index also exist for seven markets outside the Golden Horseshoe, five of them in Ontario. Of the total of 14, 13 were up from a year earlier, with rises ranging from 4.4% in Barrie, Ont., to 25.3% in Abbotsford-Mission, B.C. The index for Sudbury was down 3.1% from a year earlier.
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