A weekly survey has revealed that Canadian household confidence is at its lowest since April as readings on personal finances and the wider economy declined. The readings, published as part of the Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index, showed that attitudes were little changed at 56.5 in the week ended September 30, matching the lowest reading for five months.
19.4% of respondents predicted the economy would improve over the next six months, which is the smallest share since February of this year. The survey data, which polls 1,000 respondents and is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points, did find an uptick in confidence on the real estate market and job security which balanced off some of the negative economic view.
The weekly poll, conducted by Nanos Research, asks Canadians for their opinions on the outlook for the economy, personal finances, job security and where real estate prices are headed. Taking a closer look at the data reveals some of the specific areas in which Canadian confidence appears to be shaky.
The sub-index that tracks personal finances and job security fell to its lowest rate since the end of June (58.3), which was the month before the federal government started paying out enhanced child care benefits. The readings for the Prairie region, which include the oil heartland of Alberta, dropped to 44.4 from an Aug. 5 peak of 52.5. But, the labour market saw improvement with the share of people who deemed their jobs to be “secure” increasing to 47.6, from 46.5 previously. Respondents who said their jobs were “not at all secure” declined to 6.5 percent, from 7.6%. Context will be added to these findings on Friday when Statistics Canada is due to release labour data for September.
The survey also revealed that concern around about declining home prices eased last week with 14.5% of those who responded expecting the value of local real estate would fall. That figure is down from 24.6% reported two weeks ago and falls below the 12-month average of 16.8 percent.
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