Canadian building permits fell in July from the previous month on weaker demand to build condominiums and office buildings.
The total value of building permits issued by Canadian municipalities declined 3.5% on a seasonally adjusted basis to 7.92 billion Canadian dollars ($6.46 billion) in July, Statistics Canada said Thursday. Expectations were for a decline of 1.5%, according to economists at Royal Bank of Canada.
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The month-over-month decline in permits was the first since March.
June's building-permits data were revised upward and now suggest permits rose 4.4% versus the earlier estimate of a 2.5% increase.
On a year-over-year basis, permits issued rose 12.4%.
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 construction has commenced. This data tend to be volatile on a month-over-month basis.
According to the permits report, residential permits fell 2.2% to C$5.01 billion, while non-residential permits -- covering factories, retail space and government buildings -- dropped 5.7% to C$2.91 billion.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
September 07, 2017 09:14 ET (13:14 GMT)