After two months of divesting, foreign investors resumed buying Canadian securities in August, Statistics Canada reports.
The national statistical agency said that international securities transactions generated a net inflow of $9.8 billion in August, pushing aggregate inflows through the first eight months of the year to $112.6 billion.
In August, foreign investors added $15.5-billion worth of Canadian securities, primarily debt securities, StatsCan reported. Meanwhile, domestic investors acquired $5.7-billion worth of foreign securities, largely in U.S. stocks.
“The foreign investment activity reflected a strong demand on the secondary market for long-term debt securities issued by government entities,” the agency reported.
Foreign investors added $13.3 billion of Canadian debt in the month, partially reversing the $17.5 billion that was shed in June and July.
In particular, investors acquired $7.6 billion of federal government bonds, $2.5 billion of provincial bonds and $1.8 billion of federal enterprise bonds.
Foreign investors also increased their holdings of Canadian short-term debt securities for a second straight month.
Alongside the rebound in debt investment, foreign investors bought $2.3-billion worth of Canadian stocks in August, which is the largest total since February 2019.
Bank stocks were the focus, StatsCan reported, as the banking index rose 4.2% in the month — outpacing the 2.1% gain in Canadian stocks overall.
At the same time, Canadian investors added $7.7-billion worth of U.S. stocks in August, led by large-cap tech stocks. That group also acquired $2.1 billion of foreign debt securities, primarily U.S. corporate bonds and Treasuries.
This was offset by investors selling $4.1 billion of non-U.S. foreign equities in the month.