Economic outlook | January 2024
Weathering a freeze before the thaw
Fashionably late, the economic impact of monetary tightening finally arrived in Canada toward the end of 2023. After a strong start to the year, household spending on goods and services stalled. And although business investment held up longer, spending dropped significantly in the third quarter. The only thing saving the economy from contracting more than the 1.1% registered in the third quarter was a surge in government spending and a modest rebound in residential investment.
As 2024 begins, the major wild card in the economic outlook continues to be interest rates and how households and businesses manage high borrowing and debt-servicing costs. While our baseline forecast shows that policymakers will be in a position to ease rates beginning this spring, sparking a recovery, it’s widely accepted that we won’t see a return to the ultra-low interest rates of the decade leading up to the pandemic.
What will this quarter’s economic outlook mean for spending and investment decisions in 2024? Find out in our January economic outlook.
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Dr. Trevin Stratton is a national Economic Advisory leader and partner at Deloitte Canada and Economic Advisory leader at Deloitte Global, where he helps business leaders tackle today’s most complex and challenging economic issues. Prior to joining Deloitte, he was the chief economist and senior vice president of policy at the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. He has advised senior federal and provincial policymakers and government officials, including at the Prime Minister’s Office and the Bank of Canada, and C-suite business leaders on economic policy, development, and strategy.
Trevin earned his PhD at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Switzerland. He has held appointments as an international scholar at Yale University's Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, an E.C. Harwood Fellow at the American Institute for Economic Research, and a lecturer in economics, politics, and international studies at the American University in Dubai. He also holds a certificate in economic development from the University of Waterloo.
Currently a vice chair of the Business at OECD Economic Policy Committee, he’s also a frequent media contributor on economic issues for programs such as Power & Politics and BNN Bloomberg and publications such as The Globe and Mail and The Washington Post.