Grim Canadian Outlook Halts Five-Week Run of Confidence Gains

  • Bloomberg-Nanos index posts declines in nearly all regions
  • Pessimism follows reports of job losses, record trade deficit

Canada’s household confidence declined for the first time in six weeks with views on the economy’s outlook dimming after reports of a record trade deficit and job losses.

The Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index fell to 59.3 in polling done through Aug. 12 from from 59.9 the week before, which was the highest since September 2014. The 24.9 percent of respondents saying the economy would be stronger in six months was down from 26.3 percent, and the share saying it would weaken climbed to 23.4 percent from 21 percent.

The poll is the first full one since the Aug. 5 reports showing a loss of 31,200 jobs in July and a record trade deficit for the second quarter.

Other Key Findings

* Views of the job market remained little changed among the weakest in recent years. The 64 percent of people who said their jobs were at least somewhat secure is the second lowest reading since April 2014.

* Even the real-estate market, a main source of confidence this year, took a step back. Home prices were expected to decline over the next year by 12.1 percent of those polled, up from 11.1 percent the week before.

* Personal finances were a lift to confidence with 18.5 percent seeing improvement over the last 12 months -- the highest since January. That still lagged the 23.8 percent who said they were worse off.

* Sentiment declined from British Columbia on the west coast all the way through Quebec, leaving the Atlantic provinces as the only region showing an improvement.

The Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index is based on telephone polling with a rolling four-week average of 1,000 respondents. It is considered statistically accurate within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, with larger margins of error for regional breakdowns.

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