It's all a pipe dream (just like I told ya' months ago) [img]/ubbthreads/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif[/img]
"Ontario and Quebec are in for a tough economic year in 2008 as the strong dollar, high oil prices and weak U.S. demand take their toll on Canada's manufacturing heartland, the Bank of Montreal says.
The bank's winter provincial monitor forecasts both provinces with a minuscule 0.9 per cent growth rate for the year, while the West remains the best, with all four provinces riding the crest of commodity prices to growth rates above 2.5 per cent.
The forecast, released Friday, comes on the heels of two Statistics Canada reports showing the manufacturing sector further weakening in the face of the U.S. slowdown, with the auto sector falling 25 per cent in December and overall exports declining 3.1 per cent in the month.
"GDP growth likely remained at 2.1 per cent in 2007 (in Ontario), but as the U.S. economy sputters this year, growth should fall to 0.9 per cent and a technical recession in the province cannot be ruled out," said bank analyst Robert Kavcic.
The outlook is no different for Quebec, which lost 43,000 manufacturing jobs last year. Kavcic notes that those steep job losses were masked by robust government hiring but as that slows in 2008, job growth will flatten out.
The bank says Canada's overall gross domestic product gain will be 1.5 per cent in 2008, down from a projected 2.6 per cent growth last year – with all 10 provinces registering a slowdown in economic activity."