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Globe says BMO's Porter warns on house prices

2021-04-16 07:53 ET - In the News

The Globe and Mail reports in its Friday edition that Canadian home sales and prices hit another record in March, with prices spiralling up in most of Ontario as calls intensified for measures to slow the country's unruly market. The Globe's Rachelle Younglai writes that there were 76,259 home resales last month, surpassing the previous record set last July when much of the country emerged from initial pandemic lockdowns and pent-up demand fuelled a surge in sales. "All policy makers should be actively considering measures that they could take to calm demand, with the focus on steps that don't have spillover effects into other areas," said Bank of Montreal chief economist Douglas Porter. The home price index was up 3 per cent from February to March on a seasonally adjusted basis to a record $713,700. That was 20 per cent higher than March of last year. (The average selling price is up 31 per cent year-over-year to $716,828.) "The pace of Canadian home sales and prices is simply in uncharted territory," Mr. Porter said in a note. "Given the extreme market imbalance currently at play, almost entirely due to fiery demand, look for the record pace of price gains to spread far and wide beyond Ontario."

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