For an economist trying to forecast how the COVID pandemic is changing the economy, decision making is not very easy these days. There’s pressure for information from business and policy makers so they can make decisions so economists now provide monthly updates rather than the traditional quarterly reports.
June’s monthly report from RBC Royal Bank shows the depth of the recession Saskatchewan will experience this year is less than expected only a month ago. Rather than a decline of 7.1 percent in 2020 projected last month, the June report sees a contraction of 6.2 percent….nearly a full point better than they were figuring only a month ago.
But, they say next year’s rebound will not be as robust – up just over three-percent. In other words, more of the recovery will fall in 2020 and less of it will be delayed until next year.
But they are sticking with their view that the oil patch is the problem. With low prices and shipping challenges, Canada’s petroleum sector is battered so Alberta, Newfoundland and Labrador and Saskatchewan will be the weakest performers.