Sep 2010 23

Daily Dose of Optimism: Vancouver Expected to Grow

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Photo by Hannah Nicole Photo by Hannah Nicole

Some reason to feel better - Vancouver is expected to be the fourth fastest growing metropolitan area in Canada this year, outrun only by Toronto, Saskatoon and Hamilton. Vancouver is expected to add 4.3% to its real GDP in 2010 (partly thanks to the boost from the Winter Olympics), following the recession victim Toronto with 4.7% growth, and both Hamilton and Saskatoon with 4.5% growth, while the whole Canada growth should reach 3.6%, according to the Conference Board of Canada's Metropolitan Outlook for Autumn 2010.

A modest slowdown will probably occur in 2011, as the government stimulus slowly retreats and consumers rein in spending. Still, Vancouver should touch the 3.4% growth line.

All the major 13 metropolitan areas are predicted to record positive GDP change in 2010, after the whole country lost 2.5% in recession last year. Victoria, another BC metropolitan area in the list, should reach 3.3% growth in 2010 and 2.6% in 2011, as renewed domestic demand lifts the services sector.

Canada has successfully recovered (except the areas of Edmonton and Calgary, which have to wait until 2011) from the last year's recession, thanks to real estate market recovery, rising employment and low financing rates. However, the debt burden of households swell (since spending outpaced income) and represents obstacle for a continuous growth of spending, which slow down the next year's growth.

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