A tale of two economies

December 10, 2013 | Last updated on December 10, 2013
1 min read

Consumer inertia will weigh on Canada’s economy going forward, says Benjamin Tal, deputy chief economist at CIBC World Markets.

Read: Trends to watch in 2014

Our domestic economy won’t do well next year, he adds, since consumers aren’t starved for product here the way American consumers are. In Canada, people “borrowed [their] way out of the recession [and]…there’s not much pent-up consumer demand” due to still-high credit and debt levels.

Read: Many Canadians regret financial choices

Then we have the overvalued real estate market: though Tal doesn’t foresee a housing crash, he does anticipate activity will slow down in major cities such as Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal.

Read: Why to invest in U.S. real estate

It’s important for advisors to consider the impact of this trend, he adds, since fewer consumers may benefit from climbing real estate prices. In the next year, “the domestic economy will be subdued.”

But the external economy will remain robust, says Tal, “mainly due to commodity prices and some improvement in demand from the U.S.” As such, the valuation of companies linked to exports will likely rise, while businesses linked to consumer spending may falter.


Infographic: How do people feel about the economy?

Navigate turbulent markets

Canada’s financial sector isn’t innovative

Canadians are addicted to spending