November 2011 Canadian Economic Fundamentals

Ally

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#2
10 most entrepreneurial cities in Canada




Here are the 10 Canadian cities judged by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business to have the best environment for entrepreneurs. The annual study of 100 cities with a population over 25,000 found six of the Top 10 are located in Alberta.





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#3
Job prospects poor, study predicts




A new report from The Conference Board of Canada suggests job seekers may be in for a tough time in the next few months.




The Ottawa-based economic research group said Friday its monthly help-wanted index survey suggests hiring prospects will be poor, falling in 17 of 26 metropolitan areas it surveys, including nine out of 10 in Ontario.




Also Friday, a forecast from Capital Economics predicted Canada`s economy will remain close to stall speed for the next two years, growing at just 1.5 per cent next year and one per cent in 2013.





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#4
World beaters for startups





Canada is one of the best countries among the G20 for small business owners, but there is still plenty of room for improvement, especially as the country will need to lean on younger entrepreneurs coming out of the current recession, Ernst & Young said in a new business barometer released Monday.





The study, prepared for the G20 Young Entrepreneurs Summit in Nice, France, that starts Monday, surveyed 1,000 entrepreneurs across the G20 (50 in each country).





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#5
Why we're headed for 3% growth in Q3




Canada`s economy exceeded expectations in August with a 0.3% gain, thanks largely to the mining and energy sectors. Here`s a look at what you need to know ahead of the third-quarter GDP results at the end of November:




The good news



  • The headline number is essentially the product of a robust 3.3% rebound in the mining and oil and gas sectors, a neat reversal from the second quarter when a steep drop in output due to the Alberta fires and other weather effects pushed the economy into the red.
    Even better, the latest report also revised July growth higher, to 0.4% from 0.3%, putting Canada on track for a solid rebound in the third quarter.




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#6
Energy sector powers Canadian economy




OTTAWA ` Canada's economy expanded for the third straight month in August, driven by a rebound in the energy sector and raising expectations for solid growth in the third quarter.







Economists said the better-than-expected 0.3 per cent gain in gross domestic product reported Monday by Statistics Canada lays to rest the notion the economy would slip back into recession following the second quarter's slight contraction.







The August data "suggest that the underlying trend in growth is still strong, as the economy appears to have shrugged off dents to confidence stemming from eurozone fiscal jitters, a U.S. ratings downgrade and equity market volatility," said CIBC World Markets economist Emanuella Enenajor.





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#7
IMF predicts moderate growth for Canadian economy





After Canada's strong recovery from the global financial crisis, its economic growth is moderating, the IMF said Monday.




A resilient financial sector and high commodity prices helped the Canadian economy expand above its potential growth rate in 2010, said the IMF in a preliminary briefing on the fund's annual report on the Canadian economy.




"Broadly, Canada is doing well," said Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, IMF mission chief to Canada. "Especially compared to other G7 countries, Canada has recovered well from the crisis."






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#8
Energy sector powers Canadian economy





OTTAWA ` Canada's economy expanded for the third straight month in August, driven by a rebound in the energy sector and raising expectations for solid growth in the third quarter.







Economists said the better-than-expected 0.3 per cent gain in gross domestic product reported Monday by Statistics Canada lays to rest the notion the economy would slip back into recession following the second quarter's slight contraction.







The August data "suggest that the underlying trend in growth is still strong, as the economy appears to have shrugged off dents to confidence stemming from eurozone fiscal jitters, a U.S. ratings downgrade and equity market volatility," said CIBC World Markets economist Emanuella Enenajor.






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#9
Canadian exports buck global economic slowdown, EDC reports



OTTAWA`Canada`s export agency is sounding an optimistic note for the prospects for one of the economy`s most critical sectors that stands in sharp contrast to the distinctly bleak outlook of the Bank of Canada and other forecasters.





Export Development Canada said Monday that shipments to the rest of the world are holding up well in the face of a global slowdown, and will likely do so again next year with gains of 11 per cent and seven per cent respectively.





In its latest review of the global economy last week the Bank of Canada blamed exports, which represent about one third of the economy, as the primary reason Canadian growth will slow to below one per cent in the last three months of 2011 and remain modest at 1.9 per cent in 2012.





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#10
Canada's economy out perfors peers, says IMF




Canada is outperforming its global counterparts in steering its economy and managing potential landmines, says the International Monetary Fund.




`Thanks to a decisive policy response, a resilient financial sector, and high commodity prices, the economy expanded well above its potential growth rate in 2010,` said Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, chief of the North America division of the Western Hemisphere Department, on Monday in a preliminary report.





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#11
Strong GDP gains put to rest fears of recession




OTTAWA`A surging energy sector gave a healthy 0.3 per cent boost to the economy in August, suggesting Canada rebounded much more strongly than believed during the summer, following a surprising dip in the spring.




Statistics Canada also upgraded July`s gross domestic product a tick to 0.4 per cent on Monday, which places the economy on track to post a strong three per cent gain in the third quarter.




Following a 0.4 per cent contraction in the second quarter, and expectations of softness due to the market turmoil that took hold in early late July, some analysts had speculated it was possible for Canada to have suffered a technical recession of two negative quarters over the summer.





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#12
Making brownfields viable a win-win-win situation




Real estate developers are not always an altruistic or patient lot, typically looking for maximum returns on their investments right away.




For those who develop brownfields sites ` where the soil and water are contaminated by former industrial and commercial uses ` such expectations might have to be held in check. Cleaning up environmental messes, obtaining planning approvals, and building on such sites can mean long lead times and substantial costs.





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#13
B.C.'s Aviawest Resort seeks creditor protection




One of Western Canada`s highest-profile resort owners has crumpled under the weight of its debt, another victim of a devastating industry slump that has derailedprojects across the country.




Victoria-based Aviawest Resorts Inc. is seeking protection from creditors to deal with problems that are common to many of the struggling resorts that have been sold this year.





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#14
Real estate professionals grow anxious over prospects




Canadian real estate professionals are increasingly anxious about the sector`s prospects over the next year, as a sector that has led the country`s economic recovery shows signs of slowing along with the broader world economy.




Canadian respondents to an annual PricewaterhouseCooper survey worried the job market would slow, leading to weakening confidence in the country`s housing sector. Meanwhile, commercial deal flow could be constrained as buyers find the market stalled by lack of willing sellers.





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#15
Better export climate forecast by EDC




The global economy and the climate for Canadian exports both stand to be better over the next couple of years than many analysts expect, as long as nervousness and fear don`t get in the way, a new forecast from Canada`s export-financing agency suggests.




Using Depression-era economist John Maynard Keynes`s famous term `animal spirits` to describe how the bumpy recovery of the past two years has made investors, consumers and executives so nervous about the future that their fear and inertia risks undermining the rebound, the forecast by Export Development Canada urges all to focus on the positive.





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#16
Canadian farming poised for growth, BMO reports says





Consumer concerns about health, the environment and food safety are some of the drivers that BMO Capital Markets says will stimulate future growth in the Canadian agricultural sector.




In a report released Monday, BMO says that after several years of contraction and no growth, agriculture can expect a modest growth rate of two to three per cent a year beginning in 2012.




And the consumer move toward locally grown produce is playing a small, but increasingly significant role in that growth, said Dave Dieleman, BMO's director of agricultural banking in B.C. It's promoting value-added activity throughout the food supply chain, and, Dieleman said, the growth of local farmers markets.






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#17
Variable or fixed? It's no contest



Variable-rate mortgages are so over.





Go fixed rate if you`re arranging or renewing a mortgage, and think hard about the four-year term. If you take in all the recent developments in the mortgage market, this is the most logical strategy.





Variable-rate mortgages are being sold at the prime rate in many cases right now, which is 3 per cent. The traditional discount off prime? Snuffed out by the banks. They`ve decided they aren`t making enough money from discounted variable-rate mortgages, so goodbye discount for the most part. If you shop around, maybe you`ll get 0.2 of a point off prime.





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Ally

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#18
Take job forecasts with a pinch of salt




Employment numbers will be released Friday, and economists are expecting Statistics Canada to say that about 20,000 jobs were created last month. But what`s in a forecast, and how accurate are these predictions, anyway?




A look at the past year of forecasts shows plenty of reason to be skeptical. In three months of the past 12, the economists were almost bang on. But for other nine months, forecasts have been off by as much as 54,000 jobs. The average `miss` in Canada is 21,000.





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#19
Conference Board expects 2012 salaries to take biggest jump in several years




TORONTO - Rising demand for people with skilled trades and other workers in Western Canada's booming oil and gas sector will push the national average wage up by more than three per cent next year, the Conference Board of Canada predicts.




It predicts Canada's average salary increase will be 3.1 per cent for 2012 ` up from the actual average gain of 2.7 per cent in 2010 and three per cent this year, the forecaster said in a compensation outlook report Tuesday.




"The signal is to people that are in the labour market already ... that they are, for next year, going to be receiving higher wage increases than they've seen for the last several years," said Karla Thorpe, the board's director of leadership and human resources research.




The Conference Board report is based on a survey of 381 predominantly large and medium-sized organizations that was done in the summer ` when the economic outlook appeared brighter than it does now.





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#20
Opinion: The seven billion need Canada's crops





World population has reached seven billion people and will grow to nine billion or more within 30 years. The incomes enjoyed by these new populations are growing more rapidly than ever. More food will be consumed in the next 50 years than in the rest of the history of humanity. Demand for food climbs with population and income, creating a huge opportunity. Canada should be poised to capitalize on this opportunity to feed the world. We are uniquely positioned due to our vast tracts of arable land, abundant water, infrastructure and long experience in the sector. And yet Canadian agriculture and agri-food business are not only failing to maintain their share of world markets, but are falling behind.




We could do so much better.




Canada has the third-largest and most accessible endowment of arable land per capita in the world, behind Australia and Kazakhstan. Most of Canada's competitors have less than half the arable land per capita that we do.






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