Number of businesses edged down in Q2
The high interest rate environment will continue to weigh on businesses
By Rob Roach, ATB Economics 26 September 2023 1 min read
Statistics Canada’s latest count shows that the number of active businesses* in Alberta edged down slightly by 0.4% in the second quarter of 2023 to 118,778 (seasonally adjusted) largely reversing the increase in the first quarter. Business counts have stabilized since mid-2022 following the post-pandemic recovery.
At just 0.6% lower than at the fourth quarter of 2019, the number of active businesses in Alberta has largely recovered from the pandemic.
Nationally, the number of businesses also slipped by 0.4% in the second quarter of 2023, easing to 929,187 with the count either flat or lower in all ten provinces.
The number of businesses in Canada was, however, 2.6% higher than before the pandemic.
Two other provinces remain below pre-COVID levels: Newfoundland and Labrador (-5.4%) and Saskatchewan (-0.2%).
As elevated interest rates continue to press down on economic growth in Canada, we may see some further declines in the number of active businesses over the second half of 2023 and into 2024.
*Active businesses are those businesses that reported having one or more employees in a given month.
Answer to the previous trivia question: According to Statistics Canada’s medium-growth scenario (M1), the ratio of people aged 65 and over in the population will reach 1 in 5 in 2025.
Today’s trivia question: Which sector has the largest number of active businesses in Alberta: professional, scientific and technical services; health care and social assistance; or construction?