Statistics Canada set to give first glimpse at how economy fared in 2021


Published February 1, 2022 at 4:00 am

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada is scheduled to provide its preliminary reading of how the economy fared last year.

The release this morning will include a first estimate of growth in real gross domestic product for 2021 as it rebounded from the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Canadian economy suffered its worst year on record in 2020 when output shrank by 5.4 per cent.

RBC economists Nathan Janzen and Claire Fan say the rebound last year should show output grew in 2021 by 4.6 per cent, similar to the Bank of Canada’s latest estimates.

Getting to the finish line of 2021, economists expect Statistics Canada to show that growth in November clocked in at or above the agency’s earlier estimate of 0.3 per cent, which would leave total economic activity within 0.1 per cent of pre-pandemic levels recorded in February 2020.

CIBC senior economist Andrew Grantham is warning that December could show flat, or even a pullback in GDP, linked to the effects of flooding in British Columbia and the spread of the Omicron variant, and leave growth in the fourth quarter at an annualized rate of 5.5 per cent.

The Bank of Canada warned last week that it expects Omicron to dampen spending in the first quarter, and slow growth to an annualized rate of about two per cent. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 1, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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