Business conditions sink under fourth wave
But are still much better than at earlier stages of the pandemic
By Rob Roach, ATB Economics 15 October 2021 1 min read
The latest data from Statistics Canada show that business conditions in Calgary and Edmonton have been waning over the last month.
As of the week of October 4, 2021, the Real-Time Local Business Conditions Index* in Calgary was sitting at 157, down from 201 at the start of September. In Edmonton, the index went from 227 to 190. The province declared a state of public health emergency and new health measures on September 15, 2021.
A rising index reflects improving business conditions in an urban centre, while a declining index signals deteriorating business conditions.
Conditions got worse over the same period in all seven of the cities included in the index. The largest drop in percentage terms was in Calgary (-22%) followed by Ottawa (-20%) and Edmonton (-16%).
In Calgary, the index got as low as 87 the week of September 21, 2020. Edmonton’s index reached its lowest point the week of August 31, 2020 when it was just 94.
Ideally, we would have data for areas beyond Calgary and Edmonton, but it is likely that the rise in COVID-19 cases and new public health measures have dampened business conditions in other parts of the province as well.
*The Real-Time Local Business Conditions Index is experimental and measures the business conditions in Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver and Winnipeg using the week of August 10, 2020 as a starting point.
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