• PataBid

Public Tender Data Traffic Underlines COVID-19 Economic Effects

Updated: Jun 15

Following on to the analysis of the PataBid data set that was done two weeks ago, this is an update on the state of daily public tendering in Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic.


There are a couple of changes that have been made to this analysis. The largest change is moving to a weekly resolution on the data verses the monthly resolution of the previous reports. This was done to improve the trending of the of the current data. The second change was fairly minor, limiting the graphs to the first two quarters of the year.

Starting from western Canada in British Columbia (BC), it can clearly be seen the drop in market activity towards the end of Q1. Starting into the first several weeks of Q2 it would appear that the public market has somewhat stabilized below their 2019 levels at this time, but the downward slide has stabilized over the last couple of weeks and is even showing a minor increase over the local minimum.

Moving east again into Alberta (AB), we can see a close up of the beginning of the year, were there was a fairly strong rise from the completion of 2019. Similar to BC we can see at the end of Q1 the slide down in the available public opportunities. Similar to BC, it appears that there may be a plateau forming in Q2.

Continuing into Saskatchewan (SK), we can see that the public sector economy has suffered significantly in this province. As with the other western provinces Q1 started strong, but by the end of Q1, a slide in available opportunities started and has continued significantly into Q2. The available opportunities have now reached just slightly above the lowest overall point from the second week of 2019.

Moving further east into Ontario (ON), the economic and population power house in Canada. On the whole, Ontario started remarkably strong this year as was seen in the last report also. The start was strong enough to hold above 2019 levels even through the start of the downturn at the end of Q1. However now into Q2 the levels have dropped below 2019 levels, though not substantially yet. Unfortunately, it does not look like the downward trend has stabilized yet.

Based on a comment request from the last article, Nova Scotia (NS) has been added in for further reference in eastern Canada. Unfortunately, a caveat must be stated here, the data from Q1 and the early part of Q2 in 2019 is not complete due to limitations in collection at that point. This makes a caparison between 2020 and 2019 difficult at this point. What can be said now though is that 2020 appears to have gone through a trough towards the end of Q1 and may actually be rebounding somewhat. This is good news for NS if this trend continues. The public sector economy of NS is similar to SK when comparing volume of available opportunities. Due to the smaller economic size both provinces are more susceptible to large fluctuations during times of economic stresses.


COVID-19 is continuing to have a profound effect on the economy as we move into the summer months. It is essential that stabilizing policies be implemented now to curb further economic risk. Each one of the data points in these graphs represents a fairly large group of people who work for companies generating revenue from these public sector bids. The PataBid tenders system alone tracks some 102,000+ companies of all sizes that depend on the strength of this public sector economy.

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