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Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the annual pace of housing starts in July rose nearly 16 per cent compared with June.

The housing agency says the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts rose to 245,604 in July, up from 212,095 in June.

Economists on average had expected an annual rate of 210,000, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

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The increase came as urban starts of apartments, condos and other types of multiple-unit housing projects rose 18.8 per cent to 184,431 in July while single-detached urban starts climbed 12.3 per cent to 47,564.

Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 13,609 units for July.

The six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates of housing starts rose to 204,376 in July, up from 199,778 in June.

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