(Source: House Price Index)

Canadian home prices in May were down 6.9% from a year earlier, according to the Teranet-National Bank National Composite House Price Index™. It was the sixth consecutive 12-month decline. The index is now down 8.9% from its peak of last August. However, its run of eight straight monthly declines ended in May with a 0.7% rise from April.

Of the six constituent metropolitan-area indices, four showed monthly rises in May – Halifax (1.3%), Montreal (1.5%), Toronto (2.0%) and Ottawa (0.7%). For both Halifax and Montreal it was a third consecutive monthly increase. The Ottawa monthly rise came after six consecutive declines, the Toronto monthly rise after eight consecutive declines. Calgary and Vancouver continued to correct downward in May, each showing an 11th straight monthly decline.

Four of the six city indices were down from a year earlier – Vancouver (−11.8%), Calgary (−12.2%), Toronto (−6.5%) and Ottawa (−0.1%). Montreal stands apart as the only market that has yet to show a 12-month decline. Halifax has shown 12-month declines in only two months, February and March 2009.

Calgary prices have been correcting since August 2007 and are now down 15.2% from their peak of that month. The Calgary index has shown monthly declines in 18 of the 21 months posted since then, including 11 months in a row from last July through May. The 11 straight monthly declines of the Vancouver index have left it down 12.0% from peak. Toronto is 9.6% below its peak of last August. Ottawa is down 4.2% from its October peak. Halifax is almost back to its peak of last November. Montreal is already back to its peak of last September.

Read the full monthly update “A monthly rise in the composite index” at HousePriceIndex.ca (July 2009).

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