It was a blowout start to the year for Canada's economy. Gross domestic product rose zero-point-six percent in January - double the average estimate on Bay Street. Manufacturing was the primary driver. But it wasn't alone. Almost every sector posted gains in the month.
By the looks of things, most economists are over the moon. “We have liftoff,” BMO’s Doug Porter is telling clients. His colleague, Sal Guatieri, told us Canada is seeing the strongest growth “in at least five years.” TD’s Brian DePratto writes “The hits just keep on coming” in Canada. But not everyone is buying into the excitement. Capital Economics’ David Madani is warning housing “could soon become a drag on the entire national economy.” Lots of analysis to come throughout the day.
NOTLEY VS. WALL
Alberta Premier Rachel Notley must be wondering when she gets to catch a break. Global energy players have been quitting the province’s oil sands - as our own Jameson Berkow notes in a special report. Crude prices look set for a seven-per-cent slide this month, marking their worst quarter since 2015. And now, Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall is trying to lure producers away from her province.
On Commodities at 11:10 a.m. ET, we’ll be joined by Bonterra Energy (BNE.TO) CEO George Fink, who has operations in both jurisdictions but produces the vast bulk in Alberta.
Fink told CTV News Alberta bureau chief Janet Dirks that he hasn’t yet received a letter from Wall soliciting a move to his province but he has no plans for a shift.
Bonterra tells CTV News Alberta bureau chief Janet Dirks that Fink hasn’t yet received a letter from Wall soliciting a move to his province but has no plans for a shift.
Notley is questioning whether Wall has broken regional free-trade rules. Dirks’ report on the dispute can be seen here.
TSX STARTS SLOW
The Toronto Stock Exchange benchmark index has posted a limp start to the year, dragged down by a 6.4-per-cent drop in energy shares. The S&P/TSX composite has gained 1.9 per cent in the first quarter, compared with a rise of almost six per cent for the S&P 500. BNN managing editor Noah Zivitz notes that the performance ranks Toronto 83rd globally, using the Canadian dollar as base currency.
At 9:35 a.m. ET, we’ll get big money perspective from Mike O'Brien, lead manager on the $4.9-billion TD Canadian Equity Fund, which has gained just over one per cent this year. According to www.globefund.com, this fund is available in five different permutations with varying costs. Perhaps retail investors can be forgiven for feeling confused by investment industry offerings.
JOHN CHEN ON BLACKBERRY EARNINGS
Don't miss Amber Kanwar’s interview with BlackBerry (CEO) John Chen at 10:45 a.m. ET. The stock has risen more than six per cent in the pre-market after losses shrank in the company’s latest quarter.
ONE-ON-ONE WITH ONE OF CANADA’S MOST POWERFUL INVESTORS
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board CEO Mark Machin is delivering a speech in Toronto early this afternoon, then he’s sitting down with Paige for a feature interview. We’ll bring you that conversation this afternoon.
TRUMP TO ORDER “TRADE ABUSE” REVIEW
U.S. President Donald Trump is reportedly set to throw down the gauntlet on trade. He's expected to sign an executive order later today that will launch a country-by-country review of America's bilateral trade ties. This would come one day after the White House delivered its opening volley on NAFTA talks. And the stakes couldn't be greater for Canada. The federal government has been pulling out all the stops to remind Americans of the mutual benefit of cross-border economic relations.
Every morning Commodities host Andrew Bell writes a ‘chase note’ to BNN's editorial staff listing the stories and events that will be in the spotlight that day. Have it delivered to your inbox before the trading day begins by heading to www.bnn.ca/subscribe.