Statistics provides a concise summary of selected Canadian economic events to provide contextual information only to support users of the economic data published by Statistics Canada. For the full August 2021 edition of the Canadian Economic News, click here. Highlights are as follows:


  • Vancouver-based Conifex Timber Inc. announced it would temporarily curtail lumber production at its Mackenzie, British Columbia, sawmill for two weeks commencing August 23, 2021.


  • Massachusetts-based Moderna, Inc. and the Government of Canada announced a Memorandum of Understanding to build a messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine manufacturing facility in Canada. The parties said the collaboration aims to provide Canadians with access to a domestically manufactured portfolio of mRNA vaccines against respiratory viruses, including COVID-19, seasonal influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and other potential vaccines.

Finance and insurance

  • Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management Reinsurance Partners Ltd. and American National Group, Inc. of Texas announced they had entered into a definitive merger agreement whereby Brookfield Reinsurance will acquire American National in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately USD $5.1 billion. The companies said the merger is expected to close in the first half of 2022, subject to certain customary closing conditions, including antitrust clearance and receipt of insurance regulatory approvals.
  • Toronto-based WPT Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust (WPT) and Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc. (BREIT) of New York announced that WPT had entered into an arrangement agreement under which BREIT will acquire all of the outstanding units of WPT in an all-cash transaction valued at USD $3.1 billion including the assumption of debt. The companies said the transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021, subject to customary conditions, including WPT shareholder approval.

Other news

  • Yukon’s minimum wage increased from $13.85 per hour to $15.20 per hour on August 1st.
  • New York-based Pfizer Inc. and Trillium Therapeutics Inc. of Mississauga announced that the companies had entered into a definitive agreement under which Pfizer will acquire Trillium for an implied equity value of USD $2.26 billion. The companies said the transaction is subject to court, regulatory, and shareholder approvals as well as certain other closing conditions customary for transactions of this nature.

Statistics Canada also released the Canadian Economic Dashboard and COVID‑19 update for August. Highlights from that report are as follows:

Real gross domestic product contracts for the second consecutive month

Economy-wide output declined for the second consecutive month in May as housing market activity cooled and businesses continued to grapple with third-wave restrictions. Real GDP fell 0.3%, after declining 0.5% in April. Economic activity in May was 1.5% below pre-pandemic levels.

Statistics Canada released an advance estimate of real gross domestic for June, which points to a 0.7% increase. Other key indicators also point to stronger economic activity to end the quarter. 

Headline inflation remains above the three percent mark

Headline consumer inflation slowed to 3.1% in June, remaining above the 3% mark for the third consecutive month. Consumer prices rose 0.3% from May to June, and have risen steadily on a month-over-month basis during the first half of the year.

June’s consumer inflation report also featured a spotlight on supply chains, highlighting the extent to which disruptions in global trade as a result of the pandemic have affected consumer prices in Canada. Input shortages, production bottlenecks, higher shipping costs and delivery delays have impacted the international flow of raw materials and finished goods, putting upward pressure on certain consumer prices. 

Full-time employment strengthens as third-wave restrictions continue to ease

After advancing by 231,000 in June, employment rose by an additional 94,000 in July. Gains were concentrated in full-time work, which rose for the first time since March. All the net increase in full-time work in July reflected higher employment among core-age workers, led by gains among women. July’s headline increase reflected gains across service industries, led by higher employment in accommodation and food services. Employment rose in Ontario, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

The share of Canadians working from home in July fell to its lowest level since October of last year. Among those who worked at least half their usual hours, the proportion working from home fell 2.0 percentage points to 25.8%. For about half of these workers, working from home continues to represent a temporary adaptation to the pandemic.

Source: Statistics Canada