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By Greg Quinn and Anahita Alinejad
OTTAWA (MNI) - New home prices in Canada declined for a
third straight month in July to mark the longest losing streak
since 2009 around the time of the last recession.
Statistics Canada's price index fell by 0.1%, matching the declines
in June and May. Prices also fell by the most in about a decade on a
12-month basis, declining by 0.4%.
The largest monthly decrease came in Edmonton, the city
struggling with low and volatile prices for Alberta's heavy crude
oil, where prices dropped 0.8%.
Toronto and Vancouver, the focus of concern about a housing
correction, also saw some of the biggest monthly declines in a decade.
Prices fell 0.6% in July in Toronto, Canada's biggest city, and by 0.5%
Government officials have sought to engineer a soft landing in the
housing market to avoid a U.S.-style bust after annual housing price
gains in Vancouver and Toronto surged to more than 30% a few years ago.
Homebuilders and buyers have complained that tougher mortgage lending
rules imposed last year were driving good buyers out of the market.
Housing is a hot topic for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as he
called an election yesterday for Oct. 21. Trudeau and Conservative
Leader Andrew Scheer are appealing to middle-class voters who are
struggling to buy homes that often cost a million dollars in Vancouver
The report covers single-family homes and some semi-detached
properties like row houses, but doesn't track condominiums that have
been a major source of growth in Vancouver and Toronto. Statistics
Canada yesterday published "experimental" figures showing condo prices
fell 0.1% in the second quarter, and said more regular figures should be
ready later this year.
--MNI Ottawa Bureau; +1-613-314-9647; email@example.com