Business confidence lacking in federal budget, survey shows
67 per cent of respondents say it's unlikely deficit will be eliminated by 2015 target
TORONTO—It seems Canada’s federal finance minster has some catching up to do in the business confidence department.
A week after Jim Flaherty released the 2013 federal budget, an Ernst & Young survey shows Canadian business leaders aren’t overly confident the slim-and-trim budget can meet the goal of Canada’s deficit being eliminated by 2015.
According to survey results, 67 per cent of respondents say it’s unlikely the deficit will be eliminated on Flaherty’s timeline.
The survey also found 57 per cent of respondents ranked this year’s budget a ‘C’ or worse, compared to 43 per cent who gave it a ‘B’ or better.
“Not unlike the Canadian political scene itself, the response to the budget was somewhat polarized,” Ernst & Young tax markets leader Gary Zed said in a statement.
“The business community seems particularly divided on whether this budget will stimulate jobs and growth or the economy overall—which we know was a major focus for the government this time around.”
With a number of measures in place to spur growth—the extension of the capital inputs program and Canada Job Grant, to name a few—business leaders were split on the matter.
The survey found 44 per cent of respondents believe the budget would stimulate jobs and growth moderately, with a further one per cent saying they believed it would provide a strong stimulus.
That’s in contrast to the 46 per cent who did not think the measures introduced would drive results in these still-struggling areas.