OTTAWA (Reuters) - The prices of new houses in Canada rose by 0.1 percent in August from July and were a tame 1.8 percent higher than a year earlier, Statistics Canada said on Thursday.
The new housing price index excludes condominiums, which the government has been eyeing for signs of overheating, but the data indicates that the market for new single-family homes at least is under control.
The median forecast in a Reuters survey of analysts was for a 0.2 percent increase.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty had said last month that the housing sector was “calming”, after a period of worry that a post-recession housing boom would turn into a bubble.
On Monday, StatsCan noted that building permits for housing had fallen 5.4 percent in August, with single-family units down 3.0 percent. Housing starts data for September, however, showed unexpected strength, with the seasonally adjusted annualized rate rising to 193,600, well above analysts’ expectations for 185,000 starts.
Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Chris Reese