Corporate accountants express economic optimism, but fears of protectionist U.S. persist
A new Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada survey finds growing optimism for the Canadian economy amongst accounting business leaders, but protectionist sentiments in the U.S. and fragile oil prices remain concerns
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TORONTO—Optimism about the Canadian economy is inching upwards among professional accountants in business leadership positions, but there are concerns about trade attitudes south of the border.
This is according to a new survey conducted for Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).
The latest CPA Canada Business Monitor, for Q1 2017, found that 38 per cent of accounting business leaders surveyed are optimistic about the prospects for the Canadian economy over the next 12 months. This is an improvement from 32 per cent in Q4 2016. In the first quarter a year ago, optimism stood at only 22 per cent.
The number of respondents expressing a pessimistic outlook fell to 15 per cent in the opening quarter of 2017, down from 21 per cent in the final quarter of 2016.
Forty-seven per cent of those surveyed most recently were neutral.
In the most recent survey, protectionist trade sentiments in the United States were viewed as the biggest challenge to the Canadian economy, cited by 23 per cent of respondents. Oil prices were cited by 17 per cent as the number one issue.
“This quarter’s results reinforce Canada’s underlying economic momentum. Uncertainty remains a constant shadow over the country’s growth prospects because of trade and oil prices, but the business leaders are not allowing themselves to be paralyzed by it, as demonstrated by the climb in optimism,” said Joy Thomas, president and CEO, CPA Canada.