Eagle Vision Quarterly Newsletter

March 2010

Richard Simms
President, Black Eagle Executive Search

As we move to the end of the first quarter of 2010, most economic indicators are very positive in the Canadian economy. Statistics Canada reported on March 24th that the composite leading index, a snapshot of future economic activity, rose 0.8% in February and 9 of 10 components of the index rose, led by household demand.

 

Headline in the March 27th Globe and Mail: Canada is Moving from Recovery to Expansion” with housing sales 44% higher in February 2010 year over year with the average price climbing 18.2%. “The Canadian economy has caught fire much quicker than expected, with home building, hiring, and even car buying surpassing the most optimistic forecasts… And Canada’s trade surplus reached its best level in a year in January.”

 

On the employment side, “The unemployment rate dropped from 8.7% last August to 8.2% in February and roughly 60,000 full-time jobs were created last month alone.”

 

However, all signs are not positive. Three major banks boosted their mortgage rates on March 29th. As reported in the Globe and Mail, “surging home sales and prices are expected to cool in the second half of this year as more listings hit the market and the harmonized sales tax adds to purchase costs in Ontario and B.C….Hikes on fixed-rate mortgages.. are expected to contribute to the slowdown as home buyers face higher costs.”

 

And with the Canadian dollar approaching par with the U.S. dollar, increasing pressure will be placed on Canadian exporter’s competitive position in the global marketplace.

 

From ground level for Black Eagle Executive Search, the home improvement market is showing strength in all markets given a strong housing and renovation market. Continuing government infrastructure projects will add to this demand. The job market is definitely more buoyant with more positions available especially in sales.

 

Lastly, I would like to bring your attention to a recent report released by Don Drummond, Senior Vice President, Chief Economist and Francis Fong, Economist at TD Bank Financial Group which can be found at http://www.td.com/economics/ - scroll down to March 8th report called “The Changing Canadian Workplace”. This is a very well researched report reviewing the changing nature of the Canadian workforce over the next 2 decades as the “baby boom” generation enters retirement. This report is 27 pages long but it does contains everything you would want to know in preparing for the employment market of the future. To quote from the report “With more than a 1/3 of the entire labour force preparing to retire over the next 2 decades…employers will be faced with labour force growth that will slow to a crawl and (they) will… need to find new and innovative ways of utilizing Canada’s labour pool. To that end, immigrants, aboriginals, women and older workers must be utilized more efficiently as these groups form an extremely large, yet underrepresented portion of the workforce…In addition, higher education is an absolute necessity to fill the skill needs for future jobs.” Makes for fascinating reading.

 

For those readers who are CHHMA members, Don Drummond will be a speaker at the CHHMA AGM, April 7, 2010 at 8:30 AM – see www.chhma.ca for more details.

 

Contact Black Eagle

Telephone: (416) 458-9969
Email: info@blackeagle.ca