What was merely predicted back in spring is coming to life for Toronto this summer. A few months ago, Canada’s Metropolitan Outlook’s Conference Board said that they are expecting that Toronto’s economy is going to expand by about 2.8% this year, making it Canada’s third fastest growing metropolitan economy. The same outlook shared that Hamilton will continue to outpace the national average as it did last year, maintaining a steady and solid economy.
The Conference Board of Canada’s Centre of Municipal Studies Associate Director Alan Arcand shared that Toronto’s overall economy growth in 2017 will be driven by healthy overall growth along with gains across the services-producing industries plus the continuing strong activity in non-residential construction and manufacturing. He added that the same can be said for Hamilton’s economy this year, although it is expected that Toronto will still surpass Hamilton. Hamilton’s growth is projected to be at 2.2% whilst Toronto’s is projected at 2.8%.
A Period of Growth for Toronto
Although the real GDP in Toronto is only expected to expand by 2.8% for 2017 (it grew 3.1% in 2016), the region continues to grow. Immigrants are still eyeing Toronto as a premium location, thereby fueling both domestic demand and population growth. This in turn drives activity in personal services, retail and wholesale trade, plus construction.
This year, construction in Toronto is expected to rise up 3.1%, mainly because of non-residential projects. Meanwhile, the services sector has a forecasted expansion of 2.8%. Positive outlooks are also forecasted for export-oriented industries such as tourism and manufacturing, largely because of a healthy U.S. economy and the lower Canadian dollar. As for the manufacturing industry in Toronto, the forecasted growth is also at 2.8%.
Job growth is expected to slow down this year despite of the healthy economic outlook. An estimated 31,000 new jobs for Toronto has been forecasted for 2017.
How About Neighbouring Hamilton?
Hamilton experienced a 2.1% growth in 2016 and that is not expected to grow much this year. The expected growth is at 2.2% despite both the non-residential construction and manufacturing sector boom expected this year. The manufacturing sector’s output is expected to rise up 2.4% for 2017 despite some companies deciding to move their operations to the U.S.A.
The non-residential construction projects such as the second phase of the James Street GO Station, the new multi-purpose building for McMaster University, and the Gerald Hatch Centre for Engineering Experiential Learning are expected to keep the construction sector working for most of the year. As for the services sector, the growth rate is still projected at 2.1% for the third year in a row.
Hamilton’s job creation is expected to slow down, from 3,600 in 2015 to about 2,800 new jobs in 2017.