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The 2018 Metropolitan Outlook: Will a National Slowdown Affect Your City?

The Conference Board of Canada, February 21, 2018
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Canadian cities drove the economy to its fastest growth in a decade in 2017. But this pace will slow in 2018 because highly leveraged households will cut back on their spending. Tighter mortgage rules and rising interest rates will weigh down housing market activity. In addition, the trade outlook is very uncertain.

Canada’s cities have wide-ranging outlooks for 2018, and The Conference Board of Canada is the only economic forecaster that can give you a comprehensive economic analysis for 29 Canadian cities. The Metropolitan Outlook now includes a first-time forecast for the Guelph Census Metropolitan Area.

If you are doing business in Canadian cities, this analysis is the only time in which you can learn how metropolitan areas are faring – compared to each other, and to their own recent history.

Webinar Highlights

From coast-to-coast, the entire country is covered in this webinar:

  • Atlantic Canada: St. John's, Moncton, Saint John, Halifax — Despite lingering issues from 2017, the St. John’s economy is poised to rebound in 2018 and 2019. Halifax and Moncton’s economies are expected to remain fairly stable, while real GDP in Saint John is poised to slow.
  • Quebec: Montreal, Quebec City, Sherbrooke, Saguenay, Trois-Rivières – Recent economic momentum is expected to lose speed next year, due to slowing consumer spending growth and heightened trade risks vis-a-vis its key market, the United States.
  • Ontario: Toronto, Ottawa-Gatineau, Hamilton, Kingston, Oshawa, Kitchener- Cambridge- Waterloo, London, St. Catharines-Niagara, Windsor, Thunder Bay, Greater Sudbury, Guelph — Most cities will see a slowdown in growth in 2018 compared to 2017, due to weaker consumer and residential demand and the impact of a higher minimum wage on businesses.
  • Western Canada: Winnipeg, Regina, Saskatoon, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Victoria, Abbotsford-Mission – Prairie cities are expected to see a weakening in growth in 2018, although Alberta’s major centres could surprise on the upside. Growth in B.C. cities is expected to be among the strongest in the country next year.

For each of the 29 cities covered, you will get details that you can find nowhere else, including:

  • Recent economic growth performance and a two-year forecast for future growthmeasured in real gross domestic product (GDP)
  • Consumer demand and retail sales outlooks
  • Housing starts
  • Total employment outlooks and unemployment rate
  • Overview of sector-by-sector within all metropolitan economies — including goods, services, public administration
  • Upside and downside forecast risks

About Alan

Photo of Alan ArcandAlan Arcand oversees the Centre’s forecasts of 28 Canadian census metropolitan areas. As well, he conducts customized studies measuring the fiscal capacity of cities, economic impact analyses, and the development of customized macroeconomic models.

Alan obtained his M.A. in economics from Queen’s University and his B.A. in international relations from the University of Windsor. He has been with the Conference Board since 2000.

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