Sale of existing homes continues to rebound
Resales of existing Canadian homes showed continuing improvements in in May, with both the number of transactions and the national average price on the rise, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association. There were 49,521 existing homes sold in May, less than one per cent below the comparable month of 2008. The national average sale price in May hit the highest monthly level on record, at $319,757, which was up four-tenths of a percentage point from the previous record in May 2008. The real-estate association said the dollar value of sales through its members reached $11.4 billion in May, up 10 per cent from the previous month and more than 50 per cent above the low of $7.5 billion in January. The association said the the rebound in activity was led in some of the most expensive local markets in Canada and that had the effect up pushing the national average price upward. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the number of sales in May was eight per cent above April’s and 43 per cent above the low point in January. Although the number of resales has been rising, fewer properties have been put on the market through the MLS run by CREA members.
West Fraser temporarily shuts down three B.C. mills
West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. (TSX:WFT) said Monday that it will shut down three of its B.C. sawmills for at least two weeks this summer. The number of workers affected was not immediately known. The company said it would shut its Houston, 100 Mile and Chasm sawmills for at least two weeks starting June 29. Restarting the operations will be dependent upon market conditions which will be reviewed weekly, West Fraser said. West Fraser has approximately 8,500 employees and operations in Western Canada and the southern U.S. Shares in the company were unchanged Monday at $23.75 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.