OTTAWA, ON - Canadian housing starts opened the year trending at 191,456 units in January compared to 194,518 in December on a six-month average, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). 

“The trend in housing starts decreased slightly in January, while the inventory of newly completed and unabsorbed units saw a modest downward trend in the last half of 2013," said Mathieu Laberge, deputy chief economist of CMHC. "This is consistent with our expectation that builders will continue to gradually adjust activity in order to manage their levels of inventory.”

CMHC also tracks housing starts on a seasonally adjusted annual rate. The stand-alone monthly SAAR was 180,248 units in January, a decrease from 187,144 in December, with urban starts increasing in the Prairies and in Ontario while decreasing in Atlantic Canada, Quebec and British Columbia.