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Jul 20, 2023

May building construction investment slows

Investment in building construction declined 1.2% to $19.9 billion in May, with the residential sector decreasing 1.7% to $14 billion and the non-residential sector remaining stable (0.0%) at $5.9 billion. On a constant dollar basis (2012=100), investment in building construction decreased by 1.5% to $11.5 billion.

The May decrease in residential construction brought Alberta down to its lowest level since December 2020. This was also the province's ninth consecutive monthly decrease. 

At a national level, single family home investment fell 2.9% to $7.4 billion in May 2023. Overall, seven provinces posted declines. Multi-unit construction was down 0.3% to $6.7 billion, with Quebec (-5.0%; -$60.1 million) behind much of the fall as it continued to decline since its peak in May 2022. 

Investment in non-residential construction was largely unchanged at $5.9 billion in May, following consistent and robust growth since June 2022. 

Investment in industrial construction was down 0.4% to $1.2 billion, mostly due to Quebec (-3.2%; -$11.9 million), which saw an interruption to 20 consecutive months of growth in that province. At a national level, commercial construction investment edged down 0.2% to $3.2 billion while the institutional component was up 0.6% to $1.4 billion, with Ontario (+2.9%; +$15.4 million) leading the gains. 

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