OTTAWA, Aug. 22, 2018 /CNW/ - Although Abbotsford-Mission's pace of economic growth is anticipated to ease to 2.3 per cent this year, the city will still manage a top-three performance among the 16 medium-sized Canadian Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) covered in The Conference Board of Canada's Metropolitan Outlook: Summer 2018.
"Despite a slowing local economy, Abbotsford-Mission continues its string of annual output gains that has persisted since the recovery from the 2009 recession," said Alan Arcand, Associate Director, Centre for Municipal Studies, The Conference Board of Canada. "On a more negative note, rising interest rates, tougher mortgage rules, and the foreign buyers' tax are crimping demand for housing and limiting growth in two key local sectors—construction, and finance, insurance and real estate."
- Abbotsford-Mission's real GDP is expected to grow by 2.3 per cent in 2018.
- Output growth in Abbotsford-Mission's manufacturing and construction sectors are expected to throttle down this year and next.
- Among the 16 medium-sized Canadian cities covered in the report, Oshawa will have the fastest growing economy this year.
Output in Abbotsford-Mission's manufacturing industry's will continue to decelerate in 2018 as the effects of U.S. trade restrictions ripple through the economy. However, despite U.S. duties on Canadian softwood lumber, the local wood products industry appears to be holding its own. After averaging nearly 5 per cent growth in the last five years, the industry is forecast to expand by a still solid 3.2 per cent in 2018.
The metro area's construction sector enjoyed a banner year in 2017, aided by very strong residential activity and major infrastructure projects. However, construction growth is expected to drop to 2.0 per cent in 2018 as housing starts cool and major projects wind down, including the $748 million upgrade of the Ruskin Dam and Powerhouse.
The collective output of Abbotsford-Mission's services industries is expected to expand by 2.1 per cent this year. Growth in the transportation and warehousing industry will decelerate in line with slowing manufacturing and construction output in 2018. Meanwhile, the finance, insurance and real estate industry continues to grapple with measures aimed at cooling overheated housing markets, including a foreign buyers' tax and mortgage stress test. Growth in the finance, insurance and real estate industry is expected improve this year but remain tepid.
The local job market remains robust. Following solid growth last year, employment is set to rise by a similar 2.8 per cent in 2018. This will help cut the unemployment rate to 4.9 per cent this year, the lowest level since 2007.
The Metropolitan Outlook: Summer 2018 is The Conference Board of Canada's analysis of 16 medium-sized Canadian census metropolitan areas.
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SOURCE Conference Board of Canada
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