Mobile Site under construction - please visit us on a desktop screen.


The annual inflation rate in Canada was at 3.1% in November of 2023, remaining unchanged from the previous month and firmly above market expectations of 2.9%. The result was loosely aligned with the Bank of Canada’s signal that headline inflation is expected to remain stubbornly elevated, close to the 3.5% mark through the middle of next year, and backing policymakers' warnings that another rate hike may still be necessary to combat unsustainable price growth.


The Ivey Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) is an economic index which measures the month to month variation in economic activity as indicated by a panel of purchasing managers from across Canada, and is prepared by the Ivey Business School at Western University. The PMI includes both the public and private sectors and is based on month end data Ivey PMI panel members indicate whether their organizations activity is higher than, the same as, or lower than the previous month across the following five categories: purchases, employment, inventories, supplier deliveries and prices.A headline value above 50 indicates an increase in purchases from the previous month and a value below 50 indicates a decrease.

Canada Ivey PMI at 8-Month High in December The Ivey Purchasing Managers Index in Canada rose to 56.3 in December 2023, up from 54.7 in November and surpassing market forecasts of 54.2. The latest reading indicated a fifth consecutive month of expansion in Canadian economic activity, and marking the strongest growth since last April. Increases were seen in the indexes of employment (57.9 vs 55.3 in November), supplier deliveries (57.8 vs 51.4) and prices (64.5 vs 62.1). Meanwhile, the measure of inventories edged down (49.1 vs 50.5). The unadjusted PMI dropped to 43.7 from 53.2.


In Canada, building permits refer to the value of permits issued for new buildings, alterations, additions, and renovations that includes expenditures on materials, labor, profit, and overheads. The value is based on a survey of 2,400 municipalities, representing 95% of the country's population. Building permits provide an early indication of construction activity in Canada but the issuance of a permit doesn't guarantee that construction is imminent.


In Canada, the Index of Consumer Confidence is calculated from the combination of responses to 11 survey questions. Those questions, current state of the economy in the local area and in the country and its expected state 6 mths ahead; current personal financial situation and the expected situation 6 mths ahead; making a major purchase like a home or car now compared to 6 mths ago; making other household purchases now compared to 6 mths ago; confidence about own and relatives' job security and own ability to invest in the future and save money for retirement now compared to 6 mths ago and losing job as a result of economic conditions in the last 6 months and in the coming 6 mths. Consumer confidence is measured on a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 indicates an extreme lack of confidence, 50 neutrality and 100 extreme confidence. .


Lumber is wood that has been processed into beams and plank. The biggest producers of lumber are concentrated in the Baltic Sea region and North America. The futures contract traded on Chicago Mercantile Exchange specifies that the lumber must be manufactured in certain U.S. states and Canadian provinces.


Lumber prices steadied near $545 per thousand feet benchmark, not far from the five-month highs, supported by hopes for increased housing demand, as the Fed officials signaled three rate cuts for 2024, and the latest economic data pointed to a recovery in the construction sector. Housing starts in the US soared 14.8% mom to an annualized 1.56 million in November of 2023, the most in six months and well above market forecasts of 1.36 million. Additionally, tighter supplies in North America benefited the commodity after sawmill operations shutdowns and increased output costs led to constraints.


Price Growth of Key Building Materials Moderates Further

According to the latest Producer Price Index report, the price level of inputs to residential construction less energy (i.e., building materials) edged up 0.2% in July (not seasonally adjusted). Building materials price growth has slowed considerably in 2023 with an average monthly increase of 0.2%–down from 0.7% in 2022 and 1.5% in 2021. Not since prior to the COVID-19 pandemic has the average been lower (0.0% in 2019). The Producer Price Index for all final demand goods rose 0.1% in July, up from an unchanged reading in June (seasonally adjusted). Year-over-year, the index declined 2.5% while the PPI for final demand goods less food and energy increased 1.9% (not seasonally adjusted) with the disparity driven by a 16.8% decrease in energy prices.

The PPI for goods inputs to residential construction, including energy, has decreased 2.2% over the past 12 months. March 2023 was the last month in which the index increased.

Gypsum Building Materials:

The PPI for gypsum building materials fell 0.1% in July—the fourth consecutive monthly decline. Over the first seven months of 2023, year-over-year price increases have slowed from 11.1% to 2.6%. The average 12-month increase this year has been 8.5% compared to 20.0% in 2022.


New home prices for Canada went down by 0.2% month-over-month in November 2023, following a flat reading in October and slightly surpassing market expectations of a 0.1% downtick. Costs were down or unchanged in 25 of the 27 census metropolitan areas. The most significant price drops were observed in Sherbrooke (-1.2%), St. John's and Hamilton (each down 1.0%), attributed to weak market conditions. On the other hand, prices surged in Trois-Rivières (+0.5%) and St. Catharines–Niagara (+0.3%) due to increased construction costs. Year-on-year, the cost of new homes fell by 0.9% in November 2023, marking the eighth consecutive decline since November 2019. source: Statistics Canada


The Building Construction Price Indexes (BCPI) are quarterly series that measure change over time in the prices that contractors charge to construct a range of new commercial, institutional, industrial and residential buildings. These buildings include 6 non-residential structures and 5 residential structures.

The series is limited to non-residential and residential building construction in 11 census metropolitan areas (CMAs) including St. John’s, Moncton, Halifax, Montréal, Ottawa-Gatineau (Ontario part), Toronto, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver. A composite of these 11 CMAs is also provided.

The CMA level weights used in calculating the most recent reference period is based on a three-year moving average of building permit values issued for residential and non-residential building construction, for each of the selected buildings, in each of the 11 CMAs observed.

The BCPI is subject to a one quarter revision and is not seasonally adjusted.

JT2 Bar chart showing horizontal columns. This chart type is often beneficial for smaller screens, as the user can scroll through the data vertically, and axis labels are easy to read.