It’s always darkest before the dawn, a saying that characterizes the view expressed by the economics branch of TD Bank in its latest forecast for Saskatchewan’s economy.
In broad terms, the bank says its forecast for Canada is largely unchanged from March. But, if anything, it has softened its outlook a bit with the expectation that we are through the worst of the problems and now headed into a better second half of the year.
For Saskatchewan, it says 2017 turned out better than expected and last year produced slightly less growth. The bank is anticipating further expansion this year and then a more normal year in 2020. Among the challenges it identified were trade difficulties hitting agriculture and declining oil prices.
On the positive front, the job market has outperformed expectations and government fiscal policy – with a plan to balance the budget this year – gives the province more flexibility than most of its counterparts, which have been less focused on holding the line on deficit spending.