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Blue Christmas for Canada’s Retail Trade Industry

Many firms in Canada’s retail trade industry are struggling to adapt to a weaker dollar that is further dampening profits by increasing the cost of imported goods. Future growth in retail sales are expected to slow as record levels of consumer debt continue to weigh on household budgets. The number of jobs in grocery, clothing, department, home improvement, furniture, and appliance stores will reach a multi-year low of 1.26 million in 2016. The rise of online shopping and self-checkout terminals are helping retailers reduce labour costs.

Features

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Bright Tourism Outlook as Canada Celebrate Its 150th Birthday

While economic growth has been sluggish this year, low gas prices and a weak Canadian dollar will help boost travel to and within Canada by 3.0 per cent this year. Growing consumer confidence, increases in disposable income, and a few major events—in particular, the 150th anniversary of Confederation and Montréal’s 375th anniversary—will see domestic pleasure travel increase by an estimated 3.2 per cent in 2017. Of the nine Canadian cities covered in the Travel Markets Outlook: Metropolitan Focus, most can count on tourism growth between 2.0 and 5.0 per cent in 2017.

 
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Increasing Physical Activity Among Canadian Children

Almost one-third of Canadian children and youth are overweight or obese. But, only 9 per cent of those aged 5 to 17 meet the guideline of 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per day, at least six days a week. A new report, Moving Ahead: School-Based Interventions to Reduce Physical Inactivity and Sedentary Behaviour, finds that schools—particularly elementary and high schools—are ideal locations to help children and youth change their physical activity behaviour. Additions or changes to the physical education curriculum were found to be the most effective at increasing physical activity among children and youth. Moving Ahead provides recommendations on how schools can best implement these changes.

 
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Metropolitan Outlook, Autumn 2016

A hot housing market, along with broad-based strength across most other industries, will help Vancouver’s GDP expand by 2.8 per cent in 2017, making it this report’s growth leader. The year ahead also looks promising for Halifax, with its real GDP growth forecast to reach 2.5 per cent. Meanwhile, modest economic recovery is in sight for the economies of Calgary and Edmonton following another year of recession. This report provides an economic forecast for 13 Canadian metropolitan cities for 2016–17.

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Canada’s Earthquake Risk

A new report suggests that a massive earthquake off the coast of British Columbia has the potential to cause widespread failure among insurance companies and trigger a domino effect across the financial sector. The analysis indicates that the fiscal and macroeconomic impacts of this kind of earthquake would be devastating. Insured losses that exceed $42 billion would surpass the level at which the industry is currently capitalized. A large earthquake would result in $127.5 billion in total economic losses and could result in approximately 15,000 deaths. The report suggests the government can play a role in mitigating these economic and fiscal costs.

 
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Road Congestion Costs

Motorists in Ontario already pay for most road construction and maintenance costs through registration fees, and fuel and excise taxes. Despite this, commuters face chronic congestion on Ontario’s roads, which has a negative impact on our economic productivity and overall quality of life. As policy-makers look at options intended to improve infrastructure and reduce congestion—such as increased investment in roads, highways, and bridges—new ways to pay for these projects are being considered. Transportation infrastructure projects are typically large and long-term, and recent discussions at the federal and provincial levels to help direct substantial sums to pay for these investments are part of the solution. Road tolls or user fees are considered a means to advance this agenda, but a recent report recommends clarification of proposed policy tools and policy goals.

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Globalization and Canada’s Post-Secondary Educational Institutions

International students present a real economic opportunity for Canadian post-secondary educational institutions (PSEs) and the Canadian economy. They generate up to $10 billion annually with $6.2 billion directly benefitting Canada’s post-secondary institutions. However, international students are less likely than Canadian students to stay and work in Canada upon graduation, raising questions about the long-term benefits. In order to make the most of this opportunity, Canada must encourage more international students to remain and work in the country.

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Holiday Savings on Workshops

Register for any of our 2017 workshops and receive $100 off until December 24 using the rebate code PRM14. To view a list of workshops with dates and cities, please visit our workshop calendar. You can register online or by sending an e-mail. Be sure to quote the rebate code to secure your special rate.


CBoC Highlights

Photo of Wendy Mitchell and Annette Verschruen Photo of Wendy Mitchell and Annette Verschruen
The Hon. Art Eggleton discussed exploring basic income as a means of ensuring food security at the Food & Drink Summit held in Toronto on November 28–29. Pedro Antunes discusses Canada’s earthquake risk on BNN.
   
Image of infographic thumbnail Photo of Laura Albanese and John McCallum
Glen Hodgson wrote an op-ed on Canada’s trade alternatives to the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He was also interviewed on the topic on BNN. Manitoba business leaders, including the Hon. Cameron Friesen, and policy-makers gathered for a deep dive into the numbers underpinning their economy at the Western Business Outlook on November 24.

In This Issue

  • Blue Christmas for Canada’s Retail Trade Industry
  • Bright Tourism Outlook as Canada Celebrate Its 150th Birthday
  • Increasing Physical Activity Among Canadian Children
  • Metropolitan Outlook, Autumn 2016
  • Canada’s Earthquake Risk
  • Road Congestion Costs
  • Globalization and Canada’s Post-Secondary Educational Institutions
  • Holiday Savings on Workshops

Previous Issues


Keep Up to Date


Popular Reports

Canadian Outlook Economic Forecast: Autumn 2016
(November 2016)

Moving Ahead: School-Based Interventions to Reduce Physical Inactivity and Sedentary Behaviour
(November 2016)

Canada’s Earthquake Risk: Macroeconomic Impacts and Systemic Financial Risk
(November 2016)

Globalization and Canada’s PSEs: Opportunities and Challenges
(November 2016)

Recent Op-Eds

TPP Is Dead, So What Is Canada’s Plan B for Trade?, Globe and Mail, November 17, 2016

Defining Canada’s Place in an Era of Digital Globalization, Globe and Mail, November 3, 2016

Latest Blogs

Economic Performance Drives Rental Market

December 06, 2016

Can Donald Trump Make the Rust Belt Great Again?

December 01, 2016

The Value of Physician Assistants in the Canadian Health Care System

November 18, 2016

Upcoming Events

Financial Wellness and Retirement Readiness 2017
Jan 23–24 | Toronto ON

Western Business Outlook
Jan 25 | Nanaimo BC

Western Business & Food Sector Outlook
Jan 26 | Kelowna BC

Webinars

Express Entry: What’s on the Horizon for 2017?
Dec 13 at 2:00 PM

CEO Succession Planning in the 21st Century
Dec 13 at 2:00 PM

Trade Trends in 2017: Challenges and Opportunities for Canada’s Trade Relationships
Dec 15 at 11:00 AM