Private and public investment, 2014 (intentions)

Related subjects

PDF version

Previous release

Public and private organizations and the housing sector intend to invest $404.5 billion in construction and machinery and equipment in 2014, up 1.4% from 2013.

Strong increases in the volume of anticipated investment in the transportation and warehousing, housing and public administration sectors are the principal drivers. The gains reported for these sectors are partially offset by anticipated declines in investments by organizations in the utilities, retail trade and health care and social assistance sectors.

Chart 1 
Investment intentions advance
Column clustered chart – Chart 1: Investment intentions advance, from 2004 to 2014

Chart description: Investment intentions advance

CSV version of chart 1

Higher public sector capital investment in 2013 is expected to continue, rising 1.9% from 2013 to $89.3 billion in 2014.

Capital investment in the private sector, including housing, is expected to reach $315.2 billion in 2014, up 1.3% from 2013. Investment in the housing sector is estimated to increase 1.8% to $107.1 billion in 2014, based on projected housing starts by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Investment in non-residential construction, which represents more than 62% of total investment excluding housing, is expected to decline 0.2% to $185.4 billion. Spending on capital machinery and equipment is anticipated to increase by 3.9% to $112.0 billion.

Transportation and warehousing

Capital investment intentions in the transportation and warehousing sector are expected to increase 14.7% to $27.3 billion in 2014.

Higher expected investment in pipeline transportation as well as transit and ground passenger transportation is primarily responsible for this increase. Pipeline transportation investment intentions by companies are expected to increase 35.8% from 2013 to $9.2 billion in 2014. This would account for over two-thirds (68.7%) of the anticipated increase in the transportation and warehousing sector.

Investment in transit and ground passenger transportation is expected to rise 17.2% to $7.2 billion in 2014.

Mining, oil and gas extraction

Capital investment intentions in the mining and oil and gas extraction sector are projected to edge up 0.1% to $88.3 billion in 2014. The gain in the oil and gas extraction subsector is expected to offset a decline in the mining subsector.

In the oil and gas extraction subsector, investment intentions are expected to increase 3.1% from 2013 to $71.6 billion in 2014. The conventional oil and gas extraction industry, which would account for more than half (53.3%) of this amount, is expected to increase 3.8% to $38.1 billion. Investment in the non-conventional oil industry is expected to rise 2.3% to $33.4 billion.

Investment in the mining subsector is expected to decrease 14.8% to $11.5 billion in 2014. Metal ore mining is projected to be the main contributor to this decline.

Utilities and retail trade

In the utilities sector, investment in construction and machinery and equipment is expected to fall 4.1% to $30.5 billion, following a record level of investment in 2013.

The utilities sector is the third largest sector for capital spending, accounting for more than 10% of total investment, excluding housing.

The strong increases expected in natural gas distribution as well as water, sewage and other systems are not projected to offset lower capital spending for electricity generation, transmission and distribution, which is expected to decline by 8.0% to $22.8 billion.

In 2014, two provinces are expected to account for most of the decline in the utilities sector. In Quebec, capital spending in the sector is anticipated to decline by 16.6% to $6.0 billion. In Alberta, the decrease is expected to be 8.7% to $6.9 billion.

Organizations in the retail trade sector anticipate that investment in construction and machinery and equipment will fall by 10.7% to $9.1 billion, following a record level of investment in 2013. Quebec and Ontario anticipate the largest decline for the sector.

Other sectors

Capital investment intentions for organizations in the health care and social assistance sector indicate a 7.9% decrease to $8.9 billion in 2014. The hospitals subsector accounts for more than three-quarters (78%) of the overall expected decrease in this sector.

Manufacturers reported a 4.7% increase in investment intentions to $18.9 billion, led primarily by the petroleum and coal, chemical, and transportation equipment industries.

Capital investment intentions for organizations in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector indicate an 8.4% increase to $2.2 billion in 2014, as a result of large investment intentions in the amusement, gambling and recreation industries.

Public administration organizations reported investment intentions of $37.9 billion, up 2.7% from 2013. Local, municipal and regional public administration is expected to account for most of the gains. Federal government public administration anticipates a 5.0% increase to $5.8 billion in 2014, while provincial and territorial public administrations expect a 0.8% decline to $15.9 billion in 2014.

Provinces and territories

Geographically, total capital investment is anticipated to increase in 6 of 13 provinces and territories in 2014. Alberta anticipates the largest increase at $2.7 billion, as a result of higher investment intentions for the mining and oil and gas as well as the transportation and warehousing sectors. Ontario follows with an expected increase of $2.6 billion, as a result of higher investment intentions by the public administration as well as the transportation and warehousing sectors. In Quebec, capital investment is expected to rise by $1.3 billion, mainly because of increased investment in the transportation and warehousing sector.

In New Brunswick, total investment intentions are expected to rise 2.1%, mainly as a result of the manufacturing sector.

Private and public organizations and the housing sector in Newfoundland and Labrador anticipate spending $12.2 billion on construction and machinery and equipment, down 1.0% from the record high level of investment reported in 2013.

Total capital investment is anticipated to decrease 1.9% in Saskatchewan, where the mining and oil and gas as well as the utilities sectors anticipate lower investment compared with 2013.

Note to readers

Investment intentions for non-residential construction and machinery and equipment are based upon a sample survey of 25,000 private and public organizations. This survey was conducted between October 2013 and late January 2014.

For residential construction, the private and public investment program uses housing start estimates from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). Housing starts are forecast under high, medium and low scenarios by the CMHC. These scenarios are used to estimate new housing investment, a key component of the overall housing forecast estimates.

The 2014 estimates for housing in this release are based on the mid-case scenario for each province. The table "Capital spending in Canada, 2014 intentions, by scenario," which appears at the end of this release, covers all three scenarios.

Data in this release are expressed in current dollars.

Available in CANSIM: tables CANSIM table029-0005, CANSIM table029-0007 to 029-0022, CANSIM table029-0024, CANSIM table032-0001 and CANSIM table032-0002.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey number survey number2803.

The publication Private and Public Investment in Canada, Intentions, 2014 (Catalogue number61-205-X), will soon be available. This will be the last edition of the publication. All the information currently in the publication is available free of charge on our website.

For more information, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; infostats@statcan.gc.ca).

To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Debra Roberts (613-951-8360; debra.roberts@statcan.gc.ca), Investment, Science and Technology Division.