Recession ain’t over ’til the consumer sings

July 31, 2009

Garry Marr, Financial Post with files from Paul Vieira  Published: Thursday, July 23, 2009

There are at least 1,592,000 Canadians who don’t believe the recession is over.

Benjamin Tal, senior economist with CIBC World Markets, says consumers – including the almost 1.6 million unemployed – are unlikely to be overjoyed by the Bank of Canada’s pronouncement Thursday that the recession is all but over.

“This is a technical economic recovery and something only economists get excited about,” said Mr. Tal. “Does it mean unemployment will go down? Will it be easier to get a job? For the average person, it’s not over and it won’t be over until it’s easier to get a job.” Read more

BoC may have to break interest rate promise

July 29, 2009

 Alia McMullen, Financial Post   Published: Thursday, July 23, 2009

TORONTO — The Canadian dollar hit a 10-month high Monday amid growing risk appetite and rising expectations that inflation will ultimately force the Bank of Canada to break its promise to keep interest rates on hold until mid-2010.

“The time for tightening is not yet at hand, but June 2010 seems too late,” said Yanick Desnoyers, the assistant chief economist at National Bank Financial. “The day when the condition for the Bank’s low-rate commitment is no longer met will probably come before then.”

Mr. Desnoyers said the benchmark interest rate had been lowered to a record low of 0.25% to limit the damage of the recession and financial crisis. Read more

Unemployment rises, but less than feared

July 10, 2009

 Financial Post article published: Friday, July 10, 2009:

OTTAWA — Canada’s economy lost 7,400 jobs in June, far less than expected, even as the country continued to struggle through an economic downturn.

The unemployment rate rose to an 11-year high of 8.6%, up from 8.4% in May, Statistics Canada said Friday.

“Full-time employment continued its downward trend in June, offsetting gains in part-time,” the federal agency said. “Employment was little changed in June, leaving total net losses during the last three months at 13,000, much smaller than the 273,000 decline in the first three months of the year.” Read more