Business confidence in Alberta increased in August
As of August, the CFIB business barometer reading for Alberta was 64.3, up from 58.1 in July and 55.7 in June
By ATB Economics 28 August 2020 1 min read
Based on a survey of its members, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) produces an index of small business confidence based on a 12-month forward expectation for business performance called the Business Barometer.
As of August, the barometer reading for Alberta was 64.3, up from 58.1 in July and 55.7 in June. The index got as low as 26.2 in March.
Prior to the provincial recession of 2015-16, the index tended to be in the high 60s or low 70s.
At 59.2, the national barometer reading for August was down by 2.1 points compared to July’s reading of 61.3, but was still higher than the 54.6 recorded in June. The national index bottomed out at 30.8 in March.
Confidence in August was highest among business owners in Nova Scotia (68.0) followed by Alberta (64.3) and Ontario (63.1). At 43.9, the lowest reading was recorded in Quebec.
The CFIB stresses that “although index scores look reasonable compared to past years, they likely reflect owners' vastly reduced expectations on what good performance really means 12 months out.”
When asked about the current state of their business, 46 per cent of owners in Alberta said their company was in bad shape—the highest proportion in the country—compared to 21 per cent who said good and 33 per cent who said satisfactory.
Nationally, 26 per cent of owners said their business was in bad shape, 27 per cent in good shape and 47 per cent in satisfactory shape.