OTTAWA - Statistics Canada says municipalities issued building permits worth $6.2 billion in November, down 17.9 per cent from October and the lowest number since January 2012.
The agency says the drop follows a 15.9 per cent increase in October.
Analysts had been expecting a smaller month-to-month decline of 7.6 per cent.
Statistics Canada attributes the November drop to reduced construction intentions in both the non-residential and residential sectors in Ontario.
Nationally, construction intentions in the non-residential sector fell 30.6 per cent to $2.4 billion, following a 53.6 per cent increase the previous month.
In the residential sector, the value of permits declined 6.8 per cent to $3.8 billion in November, following a 4.4 decline in October.
Construction intentions fell in seven provinces in November, with Ontario posting the largest decline, followed by Quebec and Saskatchewan.