Alberta economic recovery roundup
Month-over-month growth in Alberta has occurred across 12 key economic indicators
By ATB Economics 8 September 2020 1 min read
Looking at the most recent data available for Alberta, month-over-month growth has occurred across 12 key economic indicators. From building permits (up 33.3 per cent in July) to daily oil production (up 3.4 per cent in July), things are moving in the right direction.
But—does there always have to be a but?—we still have a long way to go before we have made up the ground we lost during the lockdown. This is clear when we consider that 11 out of the 12 indicators remain down compared to where they were 12 months ago (see the chart below).
As of June, restaurant and bar sales were down by 25.7 per cent compared to a year earlier, manufacturing sales were down by 22.0, and investment in building construction was down by 9.6 per cent.
Retail is the one exception with its year-over-year sales 4.0 per cent higher in June 2020 than in June 2019.
It remains to be seen, however, if the rebound in sales that started in May and continued in June was due to the release of pent-up consumer activity during the lockdown or a sign of a more sustained recovery in the retail sector.
As we wait for more data to roll in, the general sense is that the economy will continue to recover as we head toward 2021, but at a slower pace than during the initial months of the reopening. The wild card is the degree to which a second wave of the virus dampens economic activity going forward.