FXstreet.com (Barcelona) - RBC Economist, David Onyett-Jeffries notes that Canadian housing starts edged up by 0.4% to an annualised 184,000 in March 2013 and beat market expectations for a decline to 175,000 in the month.

He adds that Canadian homebuilding activity has been on a decidedly downward trend since peaking in the first half of 2012, and the six-month moving average of Canadian housing starts, which the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) refers to as the “trend” rate, declined to 189,700 annualized units in March, which was its lowest level since June 2011. He writes, “The moderation in homebuilding is consistent with our view that the housing market is experiencing a gradual cooling from the elevated levels of activity seen in 2012. We expect that new home construction will continue to moderate throughout this year and next, with the pace of homebuilding activity trending near 180,000 annualized units by the end of this year and declining further to 175,000 units in 2014.�