CMHC says the annual pace of housing starts slowed in May

OTTAWA — Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the pace of housing starts slowed last month compared with April.The seasonally adjusted annual rate for May came in at 188,570 units for the month, down from 191,388 in April.The six-month moving average of the seasonally adjusted annual rate was 191,000 in May compared with 194,950 in April.The pace of urban starts slowed by 2.5 per cent in May to 170,432 units as multiple-unit starts fell 5.7 per cent to 110,834 and single-detached starts increased 4.2 per cent to 59,598.CMHC expects home building to slow, but prices to keep risingHot Toronto housing market got even hotter in May as warnings mountThe annual pace of urban starts fell in British Columbia and the Prairies, but increased in Ontario, Atlantic Canada, and Quebec.Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 18,138 units.Meanwhile, Statistics Canada says the value of building permits issued by municipalities fell 0.3 per cent to $6.9 billion in April, the second consecutive monthly move lower.The agency noted the drop was due to lower construction intentions in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.Statcan says the value of residential permits fell 1.8 per cent to $4.3 billion in April as the permits for multi-family buildings fell 6.2 per cent to $1.9 billion, while single-family buildings gained 1.8 per cent at $2.5 billion.Non-residential building permits climbed 2.5 per cent to $2.5 billion in April as institutional building permits gained 15.4 per cent at $695 million and commercial permits added 2.5 per cent at $1.5 billion. Industrial building permits fell 16.5 per cent to $346 million in April, the lowest level since October 2013. read more

US investor urges HBC to cash in crown jewels even if it

U.S. investor urges HBC to cash in ‘crown jewels,’ even if it means closing stores TORONTO – Shares in Hudson’s Bay Co. (TSX:HBC) soared more than 13 per cent Monday amid news that it’s facing investor pressure to unlock value from its real estate assets, even if that means closing its “crown jewel” locations.Land & Buildings Investment Management of Stamford, Conn., said in a public letter that HBC’s Saks Fifth Avenue store in Manhattan, New York, is worth more than the company as a whole at current stock prices.It estimates that the Saks flagship location would be worth C$16 per share, after debt, compared with HBC’s recent stock price of C$8.88 at the close of trading on Friday. The company has said in the past that the building is worth US$3.7 billion.The Toronto-based company’s shares gained $1.21 to $10.09 on the Toronto Stock Exchange by mid-Monday.Land & Buildings says HBC’s management has many options, including going private or redeveloping its properties in Canada, Europe and the United States.But it urges HBC to abandon attempts to buy additional retail brands, such as Neiman Marcus or Macy’s.“Hudson’s Bay is a real estate company, full stop. If there is a smarter and better use of any or all of the locations, stores should be closed and redeveloped and put towards their optimal use,” the letter says.Toronto-based Hudson’s Bay Co. says it’s reviewing the letter and will respond later.Last week, at the company’s annual general meeting, HBC chairman Richard Baker said that the company “will continue to strive to highlight the value” of its real estate assets, whether that be a sale or potentially engaging in a public listing.Baker cautioned, though, that a decision would only be made with the consideration of current market conditions.Land & Buildings Investment Management — which now owns about 4.3 per cent of Hudson’s Bay equity — says in its letter to HBC’s board that the “jury is still out” on Baker, given that the company’s shares peaked two years ago at $28.80.At the time, HBC was in the midst of forging major real estate joint ventures with Toronto-based RioCan and Simon Properties of Indianapolis. It had also announced plans to acquire German department store chain Galerie Kaufhof. by The Canadian Press Posted Jun 19, 2017 7:13 am MDT Last Updated Jun 19, 2017 at 11:20 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more