Friday, July 4, 2014

Quebec's First Quarter 2014 GDP Growth is Improbably 2.4%, What Does Portend for Ontario's First Quarter GDP Growth

Quebec's 2014 first quarter GDP growth number is out and in a big surprise to me, is apparently 2.4%. Now I don't follow Quebec's numbers as closely as Ontario's, but given that Canada's number as a whole for the first quarter of 2014 has been estimated at 1.2%, 2.4% is a big surprise to me. Well done Quebec. Especially since the US revised number was -2.9% in the first quarter.

What does this mean for Ontario's first quarter of 2014 GDP growth? I somewhat assumed that Quebec's wouldn't be that great and would be closer to Ontario's. However if Quebec's is that much more than Canada's, some province has to be less than 1.2%. I'm guessing that Alberta's and Saskatchewan's numbers for the first quarter won't be terrible and the rest of the country's GDP proportion is relatively small. So that leaves Ontario, with weak US GDP numbers and employment numbers for the first quarter.

What's up with the difference between Ontario and Quebec? I'm not sure. Perhaps Quebec's exports of jets has been better than Ontario's exports of cars? Certainly though, industrial electricity rates in Quebec are considerably lower than Ontario's now, so perhaps it is that manufacturing hasn't cratered as much as in Ontario. Certainly manufacturing can be good for productivity growth and thus GDP growth per capita and similarly for GDP growth overall. Something that somebody should look into. Maybe manufacturing employment over the past ten years or so in both provinces. That's expecting a lot from Ontario's media though.

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