A Budget In the Midst of Uncertainty—Canadian Outlook from the Chief Economist

The Conference Board of Canada, March 23, 2017
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The 2017-18 budget sees the federal government trying to boost the economy beyond the slow growth of previous years while wrestling with large annual deficits.

The government is expected to increase spending over the near term through substantial growth in its program spending and transfers to other levels of government for infrastructure. The Conference Board projects an estimated deficit of $28.9 billion in fiscal 2017–18, slightly higher than the government’s estimate of $27.8 billion. Our projections show the federal government still facing an operating shortfall of $15 billion in 2020–21.

In this special 60-minute webinar that takes place just hours after the federal government tables its budget, Craig Alexander will discuss the implications of the measures presented in the budget, including:

  • Spending Initiatives
  • Fiscal Outlook
  • Impact on Economic Growth

The analysis is based on the Conference Board’s unique capacity to assess the budget and provide clients with leading-edge insights. Craig will put the new budget measures in the context of the Conference Board’s latest global, national and provincial outlooks.

Webinar Highlights

During this webinar, Craig will:

  • assess the potential impact of new fiscal measures in terms of Canadian economic growth and future competitiveness.
  • discuss scope to drive inclusive growth.
  • review the fiscal risks of sustained deficit spending.
  • outline risks to the budget assumptions, including geopolitical risks from U.S. policies and developments abroad.

About Craig

Photo of Craig AlexanderCraig Alexander brings over 19 years of experience in the private sector as an economic and financial forecaster to the position of Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist. Craig oversees the Board’s macroeconomic outlook products and its custom economic and tourism research. He joined The Conference Board of Canada in September 2016.

Most recently, Craig was the Vice-President of Economic Analysis at the CD Howe Institute. Previously, he was Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist for TD Bank Group—the second largest bank in Canada and the eighth largest in the United States. During his tenure, he led a large team of economists providing in-depth analysis to TD’s divisions and clients. Prior to joining the private sector, he spent four years as an economist at Statistics Canada.

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