Canadian Shipper


Canadian economy close to meeting potential: RBC economist

Supply Chain & Logistics Association Canada hosted a breakfast seminar October 1 at the Mississauga Convention Centre, welcoming supply chain professionals to a three-hour session covering the economy, transportation costs and outlooks for 2013.

Highlights of the session included an interactive Q&A period with expert panelists, and moderated by Transportation Media Editorial Director Lou Smyrlis.

The event was also supported by FleetSmart, Natural Resources Canada’s program for fleets that looks at energy efficient practices that can reduce fuel consumption and emissions.

Dawn Desjardins, Assistant Chief Economist, at RBC, spoke of the current state of economic affairs worldwide and risk factors that could affect business in the coming year.

Desjardins said that there was an unanticipated slowing overall in 2012 in the economy, as economic risk factors mounted in Asia, Europe and the US.

“As some of these risks to the global economy dissipate, our economy is going very close to its potential rate. Levels of growth in Canada came from Canadian consumers. In Canadian households, conditions were quite good, but we were running at higher debt levels. We think that Canadian housing will pull back a little bit-there will be some deterioration in affordability levels,” said Desjardins.

Canada’s labour market has some solid underpinnings, she added.

“We’re a little bit below full employment levels but when you look at the data the majority of jobs created were in the higher wage category. The Canadian dollar is expected to be above parity into the next year,” she said.

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