For example, he noted that recent numbers have shown improvements in the export of items such as packaging materials, furniture and pharmaceutical products. He added that tourism has also seen a boost in Canada, which has seen its currency depreciate. In a question and answer period following the speech, Poloz said some exporters in touch with the central bank have indicated they are starting to disappoint clients because they're struggling to keep up with growing demand. "That's the turning point where they may invest in more equipment, expand by 10 per cent or what have you, hire a few more people and then they grow their business," Poloz said after fielding a question on whether companies are taking on enough risk. "That's the phase of the expansion that we're watching for and we know they're close to being ready." But the encouraging evidence doesn't erase the fact the economy still has tough times ahead, he said.
"That's the phase of the expansion that we're watching for and we know they're close to being ready."
For one, Poloz said the national economy took an unexpected hit from the huge wildfire that swept through Alberta. It forced 90,000 people to flee Fort McMurray and the shutdowns of crucial oil-production facilities. He predicted the impact of the wildfires to shave between one and 1.25 percentage points from annualized second quarter growth, which could produce a slight contraction. However, Poloz added that the dip likely means the third quarter will show bigger-than-expected growth, which is measured by real gross domestic product. "This suggests to us that GDP growth will be very choppy in the near term, in the second and the third quarters," he said. The Bank of Canada will update its projections next month in its monetary policy report — a package of forecasts that Poloz suggested could shift once again depending on the outcome of the upcoming referendum on whether Britain will leave the European Union.
"Two steps forward, one step backward."
Stephen Poloz, governor of the Bank of Canada, smiles during the annual Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., on Tuesday, May 3, 2016. (Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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