June 15, 2016 / 1:17 PM / a year ago

Canadian existing home sales slip in May from April: CREA

TORONTO (Reuters) - Sales of existing Canadian homes fell 2.8 percent in May from a record high in April as inventories fell to all-time lows in key regions while prices continued to climb, a report from the Canadian Real Estate Association showed on Wednesday.

Realtors' signs are hung outside a newly sold property in a Vancouver neighbourhood where houses regularly sell for C$3-C$4 million ($2.7-3.6 million) September 9, 2014. Chinese investors' global hunt for prime real estate is helping drive Vancouver home prices to record highs and the city, long among top destinations for wealthy mainland buyers, is feeling the bonanza's unwelcome side-effects. The latest wave of Chinese money is flowing into luxury hot spots. But it has also started driving up housing costs elsewhere in a city which already ranks as North America's least affordable urban market. REUTERS/Julie Gordon (CANADA - Tags: REAL ESTATE BUSINESS) - RTR45RK9

The industry group said its Canadian home price index was up 12.5 percent in the month from a year earlier, while actual sales, not seasonally adjusted, rose 9.6 percent from May 2015.

Reporting by Andrea Hopkins; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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