Business people in Saskatchewan head into this year with a sense that things are getting a bit better.
The monthly Business Optimism Index prepared by CFIB – the Canadian Federation of Independent Business – showed an improvement in the attitude of Saskatchewan business owners towards the state of the marketplace. It rose by nearly three percentage points to 43-percent. While that was the strongest gain among all the provinces, it is still a long ways below the national average as well as the target level.
Nationally, business owners posted an optimism index about 55 which is nearly 13-points higher than Saskatchewan. And, CFIB says, the target number is between 65 and 70 when an economy is performing at its potential. So we’re a long ways of that threshold even though we are now moving upward.
Alberta continues to post the lowest optimism level about five points behind us.
But the big story is that while Saskatchewan may be improving, the national picture is much more sour with seven of ten provinces posting a decline in January.