Tuesday, November 25, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian Retail Sales - November 25, 2014
Canadian retail sales rose 0.8 per cent in September, propelled by higher motor vehicle sales. Excluding motor vehicles, retail sales were essentially flat.  Sales were higher in 5 of 11 retail sub-sectors.   In BC, retail sales were up 0.5 per cent on a monthly basis, and were 5.7 per cent higher compared to one year ago. Through the first nine months of the year, retail sales in BC are up a robust 5.7 per cent, which if sustained would mark the fastest rate of sales growth since 2007. 

With the release of September retail sales data we have a fairly complete picture of growth for the third quarter. Our tracking estimate puts Canadian real GDP growth for the third quarter at a healthy 2.2 per cent, though a deceleration from 3.1 per cent in the second quarter. Growth in the BC economy is currently tracking at 2.3 per cent through September.

Friday, November 21, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian Consumer Price Inflation - November 21, 2014
Canadian consumer prices rose 2.4 per cent in the 12 months to October, an acceleration of 0.4 points from September. The Bank of Canada's core measure of inflation, which excludes the most volatile prices such as energy and food products, was also higher, rising 0.2 points to  2.3 per cent. Consumer prices in BC rose actually fell on a month-over-month basis, but were up a modest 1.1 per cent year-over-year.

The relatively sharp uptick in both headline CPI and core inflation in October could spark some concern that the Bank of Canada will act sooner than later on interest rates to tame consumer prices. While strong economic growth and a lower dollar are exerting pressure on consumer prices, inflation remains within the Bank's 2 to 3 per cent control range and we therefore expect the Bank to remain on hold until at least mid-2015, 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
US Housing Starts - November 19, 2014
Housing starts in the United States fell 2.8 per cent in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 1.009 million units. However, that level was 7.8 per cent higher than October 2013. After a somewhat slow start, new home construction in the US has been trending higher for much of the second half of 2014. Housing starts have registered a more than 1 million unit SAAR pace for 2 consecutive months and in 3 of the past four months. Overall, housing starts are 9.6 per cent higher year-to-date. 

 The recovery in the US housing market has been the primary driver of  BC's resurgent forest products industry. Moreover, a healthy residential construction industry in the US is helping put the overall US economy on stronger footing.  Moreover, robust growth in the US over the past two quarters has helped lift BC exports in 2014 in spite of flagging performance in the global economy. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Housing Demand Ratchets Higher in British Columbia
BCREA 2014 Fourth Quarter Housing Forecast
Vancouver, BC – November 18, 2014. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2014 Fourth Quarter Housing Forecast today.
"Consumer demand has ratcheted up this year and is expected to remain at a more elevated level through 2015,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “While historically low mortgage rates support demand, the housing market is also being underpinned by a more robust economy and associated job growth, strong net migration and consumer confidence."
BC Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales are forecast to increase 15.1 per cent to 83,900 units this year. Stronger economic conditions are expected to be somewhat offset by higher interest rates later next year, and keep home sales from advancing much further. As a result, MLS® residential sales are forecast to edge up a further 1.2 per cent to 84,900 units in 2015. The 15-year average is 80,400 unit sales and a record 106,300 MLS® residential sales were recorded in 2005.  
The average MLS® residential price for the province is forecast to increase 6 per cent to a record $569,800 this year and a further 1.2 per cent to $574,300 in 2015. “New construction activity is generally keeping pace with population and household growth, keeping supply in line with consumer demand,” added Muir. BC housing starts are forecast to increase 4.6 per cent to 28,300 units this year and a further 1.4 per cent to 28,700 units in 2015.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Metro Vancouver home sales above average in October 2014


Home sales in the Metro Vancouver* housing market continue to outpace long-term averages for this time of year.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 3,057 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October 2014. This represents a 14.9 per cent increase compared to the 2,661 sales in October 2013, and a 4.6 per cent increase over the 2,922 sales in September 2014.

Last month’s sales were 16.6 per cent above the 10-year sales average for October.
“We’ve seen strong and consistent demand from home buyers in Metro Vancouver throughout this year. This has led to steady increases in home prices of between four and eight per cent depending on the property,” said REBGV president Ray Harris.
New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,487 in October. This represents a four per cent increase compared to the 4,315 new listings in October 2013 and a 14.7 per cent decline from the 5,259 new listings in September.
The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 13,851, a 9.2 per cent decline compared to October 2013 and a 6.6 per cent decrease compared to September 2014.
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $637,000. This represents a six per cent increase compared to October 2013.
“Detached homes continue to increase in price more than condominium and townhome properties. This is largely a function of supply and demand as the supply of condominium and townhome properties are more abundant than detached homes in our region,” Harris said.
Sales of detached properties in October 2014 reached 1,271, an increase of 19.1 per cent from the 1,067 detached sales recorded in October 2013, and a 60.9 per cent increase from the 790 units sold in October 2012. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 7.9 per cent from October 2013 to $995,100.
Sales of apartment properties reached 1,268 in October 2014, an increase of 15.5 per cent compared to the 1,098 sales in October 2013, and a 57.9 per cent increase compared to the 803 sales in October 2012. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased four per cent from October 2013 to $380,200.
Attached property sales in October 2014 totalled 518, a 4.4 per cent increase compared to the 496 sales in October 2013, and an 53.3 per cent increase over the 338 attached properties sold in October 2012. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.7 per cent between October 2013 and 2014 to $479,500.
BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian Manufacturing Sales - November 14, 2014
Canadian manufacturing sales rebounded from a poor showing in August, rising 2.1 per cent in September to $53 billion. The increase in sales was the eighth gain in the past nine months and was primarily the result of higher sales of transportation equipment. 

In BC, where manufacturing employs over 160,000 people,  manufacturing sales were up 1.9 cent on a monthly basis, and were 9 per cent higher year-over-year.  Through the first nine months of the year, manufacturing sales are close to 7 per cent higher than last year. 
 “Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.”

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW Canadian Housing Starts - November 10, 2014


New home construction in Canada slowed in October, falling 7 per cent to 183,604 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR).  The six-month trend in Canadian housing starts of 195,707 units SAAR sits slightly in excess of Canadian household growth. 

Housing starts in BC urban centers also declined in October, by 15.5 per cent to 27,570 units SAAR.  On a year-over-year basis, housing starts were down 3 per cent compared to October 2013. Single-detached starts,  were up 13 per cent while multiple units were down 11 per cent compared to this time last year. Year-to-date, total BC housing starts are 5 per cent higher than 2013. 

Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC, total starts in the Vancouver CMA fell 20 per cent year-over-year in October as a 27 per cent decline in multiple starts offset a 2 per cent rise in singles. Year-to-date, Vancouver housing starts are up 3 per cent. In the Victoria CMA, new home construction rose 18 per cent year-over-year, with single detached starts leading the way, rising 26 per cent. Year-to-date, housing starts in Victoria are down 17 per cent. Total housing starts in the Kelowna CMA declined 34 per cent year-over-year in October on weaker construction of both single and multiple units.  Year-to-date, housing starts in the Kelowna CMA are up 31 per cent . Housing starts in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA rebounded from a steep decline in September to post a 60 per cent year-over-year gain in October.  Year-to-date, new home construction in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA is down 26 per cent.

Friday, November 7, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian and US Employment - November 7, 2014
October was another big month for job growth as the Canadian economy added 43,000 jobs. The national unemployment rate dropped 0.3 points to 6.5 per cent, the lowest rate since November 2008. Total hours worked, which is closely associated with economic growth, rose 0.4 per cent.

In BC, employment grew by 4,600 jobs in October. Full-time employment expanded by 6,600 jobs while part-time employment fell by 2,000. The provincial unemployment rate remained unchanged at 6.1 per cent. Year-to-date, total employment in BC is up just 0.7 per cent.

The US economy added 214,000 jobs in October while estimates of previous months job growth was revised higher by 30,000 jobs. Over the past 3 month, US payroll growth has averaged a healthy 233,000 jobs.  The US unemployment rate fell to 5.8 per cent, the lowest level since July 2008. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian Building Permits - November 6, 2014
The value of Canadian building permits increased 12.7 per cent in September, rebounding from a steep decline in the previous month. 

Building permits also rebounded in BC, rising 9.8 per cent on a monthly basis and 3.8 per cent year-over-year to $879.4 million. Both non-residential and residential permits were higher in September, but growth was primarily the result of a 12.1 per cent increase in residential permits.


Construction intentions were mixed in BC's four census metropolitan areas (CMA). Permits in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA posted a second consecutive month of steep declines, falling 45.7 per cent on a monthly basis, and 37.4 per cent compared to September 2013.  Construction intentions in the Kelowna CMA were also lower, with permits dipping 14.1 per cent from August, but were 12.5 per cent higher year-over-year.  In the Victoria CMA, permit activity increased 15.8 per cent on a monthly basis and was up 24.9 per cent year-over-year. In the Vancouver CMA, permits were up 8.5per cent on a monthly basis and were 1 per cent higher year-over-year.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Metro Vancouver home sales above average in October

Home sales in the Metro Vancouver* housing market continue to outpace long-term averages for this time of year.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 3,057 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October 2014. This represents a 14.9 per cent increase compared to the 2,661 sales in October 2013, and a 4.6 per cent increase over the 2,922 sales in September 2014.
 
Last month’s sales were 16.6 per cent above the 10-year sales average for October.

“We’ve seen strong and consistent demand from home buyers in Metro Vancouver throughout this year. This has led to steady increases in home prices of between four and eight per cent depending on the property,” said REBGV president Ray Harris.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,487 in October. This represents a four per cent increase compared to the 4,315 new listings in October 2013 and a 14.7 per cent decline from the 5,259 new listings in September.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 13,851, a 9.2 per cent decline compared to October 2013 and a 6.6 per cent decrease compared to September 2014.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $637,000. This represents a six per cent increase compared to October 2013.

“Detached homes continue to increase in price more than condominium and townhome properties. This is largely a function of supply and demand as the supply of condominium and townhome properties are more abundant than detached homes in our region,” Harris said. 

Sales of detached properties in October 2014 reached 1,271, an increase of 19.1 per cent from the 1,067 detached sales recorded in October 2013, and a 60.9 per cent increase from the 790 units sold in October 2012. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 7.9 per cent from October 2013 to $995,100.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,268 in October 2014, an increase of 15.5 per cent compared to the 1,098 sales in October 2013, and a 57.9 per cent increase compared to the 803 sales in October 2012. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased four per cent from October 2013 to $380,200.

Attached property sales in October 2014 totalled 518, a 4.4 per cent increase compared to the 496 sales in October 2013, and an 53.3 per cent increase over the 338 attached properties sold in October 2012. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.7 per cent between October 2013 and 2014 to $479,500.