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Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported last week that November housing starts were at their second-lowest level in the past seven months. The six-month trend in starts is 10 per cent below where it was a year ago.
Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported last week that November housing starts were at their second-lowest level in the past seven months. The six-month trend in starts is 10 per cent below where it was a year ago.
(KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS)

Hot housing sector has cooled to a simmer

Don’t be seduced by the continued big numbers coming out of Canada’s housing sector. The overheated market, a key concern to the Bank of Canada and other assorted economic worrywarts, is most definitely off its boil.

Some recent headlines may not strike the casual observer as cause for such optimism. Take Monday’s latest numbers: The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) said that national home sales in November were up nearly 6 per cent from a year earlier, while the MLS Home Price Index was up 4.1 per cent. CREA was emboldened enough to raise its 2013 sales and price forecasts.