Bank of Canada survey suggests business sentiment picked up after declining

The Canadian economy hit a weak spot late last year as oil prices fell

Business sentiment in Canada has picked up to show a slight improvement after falling earlier this year, according to a new survey by the Bank of Canada.

The central bank said Friday that its summer business outlook survey, which measures corporate expectations, bounced back after falling into negative territory at the start the year.

READ MORE: Bank of Canada identifies climate change as important economic weak spot

“The business outlook survey indicator edged up to its historical average consistent with a slight improvement in business sentiment,” the Bank of Canada said in its latest quarterly survey of senior management at roughly 100 firms.

The business outlook survey, which was done in May and early June, found that following some softness in past sales, businesses expected an increase in sales growth over the coming year backed by domestic and foreign demand.

“Sales optimism is concentrated in Central Canada and includes positive expectations for housing activity. Nevertheless firms anticipate weakness in sales tied to the Western Canadian oil industry to persist,” the report said.

The Canadian economy hit a weak spot late last year as oil prices fell and the country posted its weakest back-to-back quarters of growth since 2015.

The central bank’s spring business outlook survey indicator dropped into negative territory in the wake of that weakness, however recent data has shown an improving economy.

Last month, Carolyn Wilkins, the central bank’s senior deputy governor, said growth was accelerating in the second quarter and should pick up the pace throughout the rest of 2019.

Statistics Canada reported Friday real gross domestic product grew 0.3 per cent in April to kick off the second quarter.

The result was down from a showing of 0.5 per cent in March, but more than the 0.1 per cent economists had expected, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

The Bank of Canada’a business outlook survey noted Friday that intentions to increase investment spending and to hire are positive in most regions and sectors.

Reports of labour shortages increased from a low level last quarter, but the bank noted thy were not widespread.

“Firms often reported shortages of skilled or specialized labour,” the report said. “Nearly half of all respondents judged labour shortages to be unchanged compared with 12 months ago, with some indicating that hiring has been difficult for more than a year.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Blaze consumes dwelling in Masset

The Masset Fire Department received the first call around 8 p.m.

All Nations Driving Academy gets $360K boost from province

Terrace-based driving school bridges gap in services for remote northwest B.C. communities

Skeena Watershed reopened for recreational pink and coho

Four sections and tributaries remain closed

Skeena-Bulkley Valley candidates react to finding Trudeau broke ethics law

The election campaign is heating up before the writ has even dropped

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

Most Read