Oct 18, 2022: Permits (August 2022); Employment (September 2022). Institutional permit values experience strong increase. Labour market cools slightly compared to summer.

October 18, 2022

Summary: Permit values grew across all ICI sectors, with significant monthly and yearly gains for institutional permits. Year-to-date permit values remained above 2021 levels for the period of January to August. Employment and labour force however decreased slightly compared to the summer months but remained above the level from May 2022 and earlier.

While both construction employment and labour force saw record numbers in July and August, both decreased slightly in September. The labour force decreased in size from a record high of 628.3 thousand to 616.5 thousand. Employment also decreased from 612 thousand to 599.6 thousand. Despite the decrease, labour force and employment numbers were still higher than any point before June 2022. The unemployment rate increased slightly from 2.6% to 2.8% but remained well below the overall Ontario unemployment rate of 5.4%.

In contrast to the decrease experienced in July 2022, ICI permits values in August 2022 increased across all sectors, both month-over-month and year-over-year. Total ICI permit values increased by 76.4% from July 2022 ($1.28-$2.25 billion) and by 70.2% compared to August 2021 ($1.32-$2.25 billion). In the commercial sector, permits values increased month-over-month by 28.9% ($856.6-$1104.1 million) and increased year-over-year by 21.8% ($906.5-$1104.1 million). Industrial permit values experienced a monthly increase of 115.2% ($253.3-$545.1 million) and a yearly increase of 118.7% ($249.3 million-$545.1 million). Institutional permits values increased substantially, with a monthly increase of 259.4% ($168.4-$605.2 million) and an almost identical yearly increase of 259.1% ($168.5-$605.2 million). The change in institutional permit values is the largest monthly and yearly percentage increase since December 2019. This indicates a large increase in future building activity in the institutional sector.

YTD permit values across all ICI sectors were higher compared to the same period last year. The largest increase was in the industrial sector, which saw an increase of 64.7%.



Katherine Jacobs
Director of Research

Ontario Construction Secretariat (OCS)
180 Attwell Drive, Suite 360, Toronto, ON M9W 6A9
P 416.620.5210 ext. 222
F 416.620.5310