August 11, 2016 / 12:47 PM / 2 years ago

Canada new home prices rise in June on Toronto, Vancouver

Realtors' signs are hung outside a newly sold property in a Vancouver, B.C., Canada neighbourhood where houses regularly sell for C$3-C$4 million (US$2.7-3.6 million) September 9, 2014. REUTERS/Julie Gordon/File Photo - RTSIA1K

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian new housing prices edged higher in June, adding on to the previous month’s robust acceleration as the hot markets of Toronto and Vancouver saw costs increase again, data from Statistics Canada showed on Thursday.

The new housing price index was up 0.1 percent in June, falling short of economists’ expectations for a 0.3 percent gain. Prices had increased by 0.7 percent in May, the fastest pace in almost nine years.

The Toronto and Oshawa region was the biggest contributor to June’s gain, rising 0.5 percent as builders cited higher labor costs and prices on new listings.

Prices in Vancouver climbed 0.4 percent. The rapid rise in prices in the two major cities have raised concerns that their markets are becoming overheated. Vancouver earlier this month implemented a new tax on foreign home buyers to try to improve affordability for residents.

The home price index excludes apartments and condominiums, which account for about one-third of new housing.

In Calgary, which has been hurt by the oil price slump, new home prices fell 0.5 percent as builders said they had to offer promotional prices to encourage sales.

Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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