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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Thomas StorringDirector – Economics and Statistics
Tel: 902-424-2410Email: thomas.storring@novascotia.ca

September 21, 2020
BUILDING CONSTRUCTION, JULY 2020

Total residential and non-residential construction

Investment in Nova Scotia building construction increased 1.8 per cent in July 2020 (seasonally adjusted) compared to June 2020. Halifax monthly building construction increased 0.6 per cent in July 2020.  

Nationally, investment in building construction increased 1.8 per cent in July 2020. Although investment in building construction rebounded in last few months it still remains 1.3 per cent below the level observed in February 2020. All provinces showed monthly increase except Saskatchewan (-2.4 per cent), with the largest increase in Newfoundland and Labrador (+44.2 per cent) and Prince Edward Island (+16.7 per cent).

Year-over-year (July 20 vs July 19, seasonally adjusted), building construction investment was down 7.1 per cent in Nova Scotia. Halifax construction activity was down 4.4 per cent. National building construction investment was up 0.5 per cent with six provinces reporting declines over July 2019. The fastest increases over this period were reported in Newfoundland and Labrador (+34.4 per cent), Prince Edward Island (+11.8%), and Ontario (+8.8 per cent). The fastest declines were reported in New Brunswick (-14.3 per cent) followed by Saskatchewan (-13.2 per cent) and Alberta (-10.4 per cent).

Total Nova Scotia building construction investment was $277.2 million in July. Halifax building construction totaled $159.6 million in July, while there was $117.6 million in building construction outside of Halifax.

 

Residential construction

In July 2020, residential construction investment (seasonally adjusted) in Nova Scotia increased 3.0 per cent to $225.3 million. Halifax residential construction increased 1.9 per cent to $132.6 million. 

National residential construction increased 4.9 percent month-to-month as all provinces reported higher residential construction investment in July 2020. The fastest increases were reported in Newfoundland and Labrador (+66.3 per cent) followed by Prince Edward Island (+20.6 per cent) and New Brunswick (+6.6 per cent). Despite another month of national residential growth, residential investment in Canada remained 3.7 per cent lower than the pre-COVID-19 levels observed in February 2020.

Year-over-year (July 20 vs July 19, seasonally adjusted) residential construction investment was down 8.0 per cent in Nova Scotia. Halifax's residential construction was down 5.9 per cent. 

National residential construction was down 3.5 per cent. Seven provinces reported lower residential construction investment for the period, with Manitoba (-10.3 per cent), British Columbia (-9.4 per cent), and Quebec (-8.4 per cent) reporting largest percentage decrease. Residential construction was up in Newfoundland and Labrador (+67.6 per cent), Prince Edward Island (+11.9 per cent) and Ontario (+1.9 per cent).

Lower renovations outside of Halifax was the largest factor in the decrease compared to July 2019. In July 2020, new construction was up for single and down for multiple dwelling units in Halifax and down for single and up for multiple dwellings outside of Halifax.

Non-residential construction

In July, non-residential building construction decreased 3.0 per cent to $51.9 million in Nova Scotia (seasonally adjusted). In Halifax, non-residential construction was down 5.5 per cent to $27.0 million.

National non-residential building construction decreased 3.7 per cent in July. Eight provinces reported declines with the fastest declines in New Brunswick (-8.3 per cent), Saskatchewan (-6.0 per cent), and Quebec (-4.8 per cent). Two provinces reported monthly gains Newfoundland and Labrador (+4.2 per cent) and Prince Edward Island (+4.1 per cent).

Year-over-year (July 20 vs July 19, seasonally adjusted) Nova Scotia's non-residential construction (seasonally adjusted) was down 2.7 per cent. Halifax's non-residential construction was up 3.7 per cent year-over-year.

National non-residential construction investment increased 9.1 per cent. The fastest growth was reported in Quebec (+31.7 per cent) and Ontario (+24.3 per cent). The fastest declines were reported in New Brunswick (-34.2 per cent), Saskatchewan (-26.4 per cent), and Alberta (-18.3 per cent).

Year-over-year (July 20 vs July 19) Nova Scotia non-residential building construction decreases were concentrated in outside of Halifax commercial and institutional/government projects. 

 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, comparisons of year-to-date averages and sums do not show Nova Scotia’s rapidly-changing economic situation. The DailyStats will focus on year-over-year comparisons, comparing one month with the same month in the prior year. Where possible the DailyStats will make comparisons of seasonally adjusted data from the pre-COVID-19 period (January and February 2020) with the period during which COVID-19 measures were in place from March 2020 onwards.

Statistics Canada.  Table  34-10-0175-01   Investment in Building Construction



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