Canadian Building Permits - December 6, 2012

Canadian building permits rose 15 per cent in October, offsetting a 13 per cent decline in September . The increase in permits was largely a result of surging non-residential construction intentions in Quebec and Ontario. In BC, permitting activity sagged 18 per cent with declines in both residential (-17 per cent) and non-residential (-19 per cent) permit volume. However, this follows an outstanding September that saw permit volumes over $1 billion. Averaging over the last three months, total BC building permits were trending over $920 million per month. On a year-over-year basis, total BC permit volume was 20 per cent higher than October 2011.

Permit activity in BC's four major metropolitan areas moderated in October, with the exception of the Kelowna CMA which saw permit volumes spring forward following previous months of slower activity. Kelowna CMA permits more than doubled in October and were 53 per cent higher year-over-year.  The Vancouver CMA saw total permits fall 40 per cent month-over-month but were up 11 per cent year-over-year in October. In the Abbotsford CMA, permits tumbled following a very strong September. Likewise, the Victoria CMA saw permit volumes fall 31 per cent month-over-month in October,  but were 17 per cent higher than October 2011.


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