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Poor month, but good Q2 – Investment in building construction June 2021


September 16, 2021
By Anthony Capkun


September 16, 2021 – Investment in building construction decreased 4.5% to $18.4 billion in June 2021, reports Statscan. Both residential and non-residential construction investment were down following a period of sustained growth from November 2020 to April 2021.

Following a 3.0% decrease in May, residential construction investment fell 5.8% in June to $13.8 billion.

Investment in single-family homes remained well above pre-Covid-19 levels, says Statscan, despite falling 7.3% in June to $7.5 billion. Ontario and Quebec pulled single-unit investment down in June, after Ontario led national growth since May 2020.

Multi-unit construction investment was down 3.8% to $6.2 billion in June, with more than half of the provinces posting declines. Quebec reported the largest decrease mainly in the city of Montreal, followed by Ontario and British Columbia.

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After posting slight increases for the last six months, non-residential construction investment edged down 0.4% to $4.6 billion in June, reflecting declines in commercial and industrial investment.

Commercial construction investment declined 1.0% to $2.5 billion. The largest drop stemmed from Ontario, down 2.2%, as projects such as storage facilities in the cities of Ajax and Brampton began to slow down after peaking earlier this year.

Industrial construction investment was down 1.2% to $825 million in June. Minimal growth in four provinces was not enough to counter the decline.

Institutional investment increased for the eighth consecutive month, up 1.3% to $1.2 billion. Ontario led the way, advancing 2.8% to $430 million, aided by projects such as a long-term care home in Mississauga.

Quebec, Alberta and New Brunswick also reported gains.

The Quarterly Report

Total investment in building construction increased 7.3% to $57.2 billion in the second quarter of 2021.

Residential construction surpassed $40 billion for the first time ($43.4 billion), with an increase of 9.3% compared with Q1 2021. The strength of the residential sector in Q2 continued to stem from single-unit investment, specifically in the larger provinces.

Non-residential investment posted a slight increase in Q2, up 1.5% to $13.8 billion, yet remained slightly below the same quarter in 2020.

Institutional investment reported a 4.8% increase, with the most growth coming from Ontario and Quebec.

Quebec posted its highest investment in this component since the series began in 2010, up 6.5% to $988 million and was boosted by construction of secondary schools, long-term care homes and hospitals.

Industrial construction investment was up 1.1%, despite declines in more than half of the provinces. Quebec and Ontario led the growth, with Quebec 35.7% higher than the second quarter of 2020.

Commercial investment inched forward 0.2% this quarter, remaining below pre-Covid-19 levels. Ongoing projects in Ontario and Alberta helped to offset declines in Quebec and Manitoba.



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