The Owl: Focused on Alberta’s Economy

Retail sales, unemployment rate, population growth, inflation, international trade—these are just a few of the economic trends the team makes sense of in The Owl.

Economics News

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The growing importance of India’s economy

India's economy is forecast to become the world's third largest by 2030

Population growth uneven across Alberta municipalities

The population of 194 municipalities in Alberta decreased between 2016 and 2022

Restaurant sales retreated in November

Seasonally-adjusted revenues at Alberta’s food services and drinking places contracted by $31.8 million (-3.4%) in November 2022

Coming up short

Wage growth outpaced by inflation in November

New home prices cooler to end the year

After rising during the first half of 2022, new home prices in Alberta edged down over the second half of the year

Borrowing costs go up again

The Bank of Canada announced this morning it is raising its trendsetting policy interest rate from 4.25% to 4.5%

Wholesale revenues climb to a new peak

Seasonally adjusted revenues for Alberta wholesale traders ticked up by $90 million (+1.0%) in November to reach $9.3 billion, the highest level on record

Retail activity still holding up

Given the double whammy of elevated inflation and higher borrowing cost, consumers have not pulled back their spending as much as expected

New vehicle sales continue to face headwinds

New vehicle sales in Alberta have languished for the sixth straight month compared to 2021 levels

A noteworthy year for home construction in Alberta

Total housing starts for the year were 14.4% higher than in 2021 and 33.7% above the pre-pandemic level set in 2019

Manufacturing sales took a breather in November

The value of Alberta's seasonally-adjusted manufacturing sales fell $280 million (-3.0%) to $9.2 billion in November

Inflation still too high, but trending down

The headline inflation rate in Canada in December was 6.3%, down from 6.8% in November

A look back at Alberta’s labour market in 2022

Continued economic growth in the province combined with the labour market momentum built up last year will support job growth in Alberta in 2023

Alberta is a popular place

Alberta’s net gain in residents from other parts of Canada has only been higher on one occasion and that was back in the third quarter of 1980

Alberta oil production sets another record

Total oil production in Alberta climbed to 3.96 million barrels per day in November

Crop prices remain robust

The average price of Alberta wheat, barley, and canola—Alberta’s three largest crops—all ticked up in November

Construction activity on the rise in November

The seasonally-adjusted value of building permits issued by Alberta municipalities increased by $52.5 million (+4.5%) to reach $1.2 billion in November

Lower energy prices dampened exports in November

The value of Alberta’s international merchandise exports in November 2022 contracted by $1.1 billion (-6.1%) relative to October

Jobs jumped in December

Despite the growth in employment, increased participation in the labour market kept the provincial unemployment rate steady at 5.8%

Delayed onset economic soreness

The top five economic stories to watch in 2023

A gloomy year of…economic growth!

Elevated inflation has been making life more difficult for households and businesses, but the overall economy in Alberta and Canada will still post strong numbers in 2022

Manufacturing sales in Alberta hit record high in October

After decreasing four months in a row, seasonally-adjusted manufacturing sales in Alberta increased by 7.3% in October

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