Québec City economic statistics

Québec City is a thriving economic hub. Learn more about Québec City’s main economic indicators. You can use this information to evaluate the region’s performance in several areas:

You can also access a list of major projects that are underway in the region, news ventures by private employers as well many relevant articles and documents.

Discover the Québec City region’s vitality and community.

The labour market

Statistics Canada estimated that there were 435,800 people employed in the Québec City CMA, which is explained by a gain of 8,600 jobs (+2.0%) in August. Therefore, market labour growth continued for the second month in a row, with 37% of all jobs created in the province of Quebec registered in the Québec City region. After a difficult spring, the number of jobs has now surpassed the level registered before the pandemic (+0.3%). 

Statistics Canada estimated that the number of active workers—either employed or looking for work—grew by 10,800 people in August (+2.4%), bringing the total to 455,800. This is the highest monthly increase among major Canadian CMAs.  

Data updated in march 2021

Want to know more? Read our August 2021 analysis.

  • 4.2%

    Unemployment rate

    (2021)

  • +12,500

    Job creation

    (2021)

  • 62,9%

    Employment rate

    (2021)

  • 1300

    Change in active population

    (2021)

Economic growth

Economic vitality in the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) and a robust labour market supported consumption, a major component of gross domestic product (GDP). Investment, however, was supported by the level of residential investment, with growth reaching a record high in 2018. Not to be outdone, public investment also contributed to the CMA’s economic growth. Overall, the area maintained a growth level similar to that of 2017 (2.4%), a performance that brought the CMA’s real GDP to $35.8B in 2018.

Information updated as of May 2019.

  • $39,4 billion

    Real GDP

    (2021)

  • +4.3%

    Real GDP variation

    (2021)

  • $90.960

    Productivité
    (PIB réel par emploi)
    (2021)

  • +3.4%

    Real GDP variation (prevision)

    (2022)

Residential and non-residential investments

Non-residential investment in the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) reached a peak in 2019, with $4.6 billion in expenditures. This performance was supported in part by investment from service-producing industries, which also reached a peak since 2013. The public sector1 , through the various government levels, continues the momentum started after 2015, reaching $2.6 billion in 2019, another peak in the CMA2 . As for residential investment, housing supply resumed its rise, with construction starts estimated at 6,203 new units in 2019. The existing home market also performed well as the resale market registered 8,307 transactions in the CMA, a historical record.

The current pandemic appears in a context where the CMA’s various economic stakeholders, aware of the good economic health and the favourable outlooks in the region, were showing the will to increase investment. While the effects of the current crisis are still difficult to measure, it is clear that the CMA will have to show resilience. Major investment projects, like the structured public transit network, the speeding up of investments planned as part of the Plan québécois des infrastructures, or the government’s announced investment into science and technology projects related to COVID-19, will give the region a stepping stone to continue its economic development

Information updated as of July 2020.

  • $4.96 billion

    Capital assets

    Non-residential (+15%)

  • 10,197

    Resells

    in 2021 (-4%)

  • 9,389

    Construction starts

    (+40%, a historical record)

  • $3.8 billion

    Residential investment

    (+33%, a historical record)

Purchasing power

This analysis presents the outcomes for the year 2021, in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, and provides a financial portrait of the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) population. After good results in terms of the cost of living and purchasing power in 2020, the Québec City CMA registered an increased inflation rate (+3.5%) and low growth in personal disposable income per capita (+0.3%) in 2021. However, the average annual salary grew by 4.7%, the highest increase among the eight major Canadian CMAs. Meanwhile, the average hourly wage increased by 2% in the Québec City CMA, the third-highest growth among its Canadian counterparts.

Strong real estate market activity continued in 2021 in the Québec City CMA, with a 15.5% increase in price for a single-family house, and a 5% increase in rent for a two-bedroom apartment. Despite these rises, the average price for a single-family house ($324,075) remains the lowest among major Canadian CMAs.

The number of bankruptcies dropped for the fourth year in a row in the Québec City region, with 907 consumers and 135 businesses filing for bankruptcies in 2021.

Information updated as of May 2022.

  • $52,299

    Average salary

    (+4.7%)

  • +3.5%

    Inflation rate

    (2021)

  • $16.8 billion

    Retail sales

    (+11%)

  • $34,973

    Personal disposable income

    (+0.3%)

Demographic overview

According to the Institut de la statistique du Québec (ISQ), there were 817,408 residents in the area in 2018, a 0.8% increase compared to the previous year. Despite lower growth compared to the provincial average (+1.1%), the Québec City census metropolitan area (CMA) remains the second most populated in the province. This means that Québec City retains its demographic weight of 9.7%, behind the Montréal CMA (50.7%).

In 2018, population growth was supported by natural increase and immigration, which is consistent with the ISQ’s most recent forecast scenario. The population ageing phenomenon also continues to grow and will remain a concern in the years to come.

Information updated as of May 2019.

  • 836,800

    Total population

    (2021)

  • +0.5%

    Population growth

    (2021)

  • 752

    Natural increase in population

    (2021)

  • 4,318

    Attracted people

    (2020-2021)

Our Economics Team

Abdoul Echraf
Economist
aechraf@quebecinternational.ca
Émile Émond
Economist
eemond@quebecinternational.ca
El Hadji Djime Nimaga
Economist
elnimaga@quebecinternational.ca

Contact for information requests

Elsa Iskander
Advisor - Press relations and public communications
eiskander@quebecinternational.ca

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