Canada Building Permits Drop 7.7% in November

By Paul Vieira Features Dow Jones Newswires

Canadian building permits fell in November at a steeper-than-expected pace, the first decline in three months.

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The total value of building permits issued by Canadian municipalities dropped 7.7% on a seasonally adjusted basis to 7.66 billion Canadian dollars ($6.15 billion) in November, Statistics Canada said Wednesday. Expectations were for a 1% decline, according to economists at Royal Bank of Canada.

Meanwhile, data for October were revised upward, and now indicate permits issued rose 4.4% to C$8.30 billion from an earlier estimate of a 3.5% increase.

On a year-over-year basis, permits issued increased 1.3%.

Building permits are meant to provide an early indication of construction activity in Canada and are based on a survey of 2,400 municipalities, representing 95% of the country's population. A permit gives a contractor the right to build but doesn't necessarily suggest that construction has commenced. This data tend to be volatile on a month-over-month basis.

According to the permits report, residential permits decreased 4.6% to C$4.75 billion, while non-residential permits--covering industrial, office and government buildings--plunged 12.3% to C$2.90 billion.

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Write to Paul Vieira at paul.vieira@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 10, 2018 09:18 ET (14:18 GMT)