Photographer: Christinne Muschi/Bloomberg

Canadian Consumer Confidence Hits 8-Week Low on Trump’s Nafta Push

  • Sentiment on personal finances weakens for 8th straight week
  • Economic pessimism has climbed steadily since November: Nanos

Canadian household confidence fell to the lowest since early December, weekly telephone polling showed, as U.S. President Donald Trump moved forward on his pledge to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.

The Bloomberg Nanos Canada Confidence Index fell to 56.1 in the period ended Jan. 27, which coincided with Trump’s first full week in office. Pessimism about the economic outlook and personal finances deepened.

Trump said he intends to act quickly on renegotiating Nafta, and one suggestion is the imposition of a border tax. Since the November U.S. vote, the share of respondents in the Nanos polling who say the economy will deteriorate has climbed 9 points to 33 percent, while those who see it improving is little changed at 21 percent.

“This is a noticeable drop coincidental with the U.S. election and focus on the Trump Administration looking to renegotiate the Nafta” trade pact, said Nanos Research Group Chairman Nik Nanos.

Sentiment about personal finances declined for the eighth straight week, with 28.8 percent of respondents saying they were worse off than a year ago, up from 27.6 percent.

Here are other key findings of polling from the week ended Jan. 27:

  • Sentiment about housing weakened slightly. The share of respondents predicting higher real estate prices declined to 38.5 percent from 39 percent, while the share who see lower prices rose to 13.8 percent, from 13.7 percent.
  • The job market remains a bright spot with the 51.2 percent of people calling their positions secure the highest since June.
  • Confidence fell in almost every part of Canada last week, with the exception of British Columbia. The Atlantic region led the declines with a drop to 56 from 58.9, and in Ontario confidence fell to 57.8 from 58.8.

The Bloomberg Nanos Canada Confidence Index is based on a four-week rolling average of 1,000 respondents, and is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

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