Bank of Canada survey suggests business sentiment picked up after declining

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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw said the province still hopes to bring the hospitalization number down before relaxing restrictions. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
14 new deaths, 366 new COVID-19 cases in Alberta

Province nearing 100K COVID-19 vaccine doses administered

Art Kempf, originally from the Stettler area but now living in Lacombe, is pictured here with his late wife Lillian. Art’s 100th birthday is coming up on Feb. 22nd.
photo submitted
Former Stettler area resident Art Kempf will be celebrating a very special day next month

Kempf, now a Lacombe resident, marks his 100th birthday on Feb. 22nd

photo courtesy of Lara Angus
Kate Syson, Sharon Fischer and Allan King pose with the Zamboni on Stettler’s newest skating spot.
photo courtesy of Lara Angus
Stettler Elementary leadership take the Zamboni for a spin

Sharon Fischer and Kate Syson lend a hand for Stettler’s new skating spot

People skate on a lake in a city park in Montreal, Sunday, January 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
The end of hugs: How COVID-19 has changed daily life a year after Canada’s 1st case

Today marks the one year anniversary of COVID-19 landing in Canada

Terrance Josephson of the Princeton Posse, at left, and Tyson Conroy of the Summerland Steam clash during a Junior B hockey game at the Summerland Arena in the early spring of 2020. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Test your knowledge of Canada’s national winter sport

(Photo submitted)
Central Alberta researchers recognized for studies in agricultural sciences

Jessica Sperber of Ponoka and David MacTaggart of Lacombe awarded prestigious scholarship

FILE – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivers his opening remarks at a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Tuesday, January 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine CEO ‘very, very clear’ that Canada’s contracts will be honoured: Trudeau

Trudeau says he spoke to Moderna CEO on the morning of Jan. 26

A ground worker wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 unloads lobsters from a WestJet Airlines flight at Vancouver International Airport, in Richmond, B.C., on Thursday, January 21, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Trudeau teases stricter travel measures; Canadians flying to U.S. now need COVID test

Prime minister says measures need to not hurt imports and essential trade

(Photo submitted)
Ponoka RCMP receives new police puppy trainee

Detachment says goodbye to ‘Maja’ and welcomes ‘Neutron’

'The Coronavirus Isn't Scary' by Kristy Walker.
Sylvan Lake author pens first children’s book about COVID-19

“The Coronavirus Isn’t Scary” by Kristy Walker teaches children to take care of themselves

Whistle Stop Cafe owner Christopher Scott and his sister Melodie are serving sit-down customers in their Mirror diner to protest health restrictions that they say are unfair to restaurants and other small businesses. (Photo by Paul Cowley/Advocate staff)
Central Alberta restaurant owner defies health restrictions by serving diners

Whistle Stop Cafe owner says pandemic restrictions unfair to restaurants and small businesses

The Northwest Territories flag flies on a flagpole in Ottawa on July 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Alberta man charged with threatening Northwest Territories public health officer

Police did reveal the nature of the threats, but said it was concerning

A healthy volunteer receives an injection in this undated handout image provided by Providence Therapeutics. Human clinical trials have begun in Toronto for a proposed COVID-19 vaccine by a Canadian company. Providence Therapeutics of Calgary says 60 subjects will be monitored for 13 months, with the first results expected next month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Providence Therapeutics
*MANDATORY CREDIT*
Calgary company begins human clinical trials for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate

If successful, the vaccine could be released by the end of the year

Most Read