Canadians increasingly divided on economic outlook: Survey

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A new survey has found Canadians are increasingly divided on the country’s economic outlook for 2024.

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Nearly two-in-five Canadians believe the country is already in a recession while the number of people who say the economy will avoid a downturn jumped from 9% to 20%, according to the Dye & Durham Canadian Pulse Report for the first quarter of 2024 compared to the end of 2023.

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Dye & Durham, a legal software provider based in Canada, surveyed 1,015 people between Feb. 28 and March 3 via the online Angus Reid Forum on the economic, technological and real estate trends in the country.

The poll also said interest rate cut delays have led to more than a quarter of Canadians expressing intentions to wait for better borrowing conditions before deciding to enter the real estate market or sell their home.

“Canadians are growing more optimistic about their financial horizons, laying a strong foundation for future economic growth and upswings,” Martha Vallance, Dye & Durham’s Chief Operating Officer, said in a news release.

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“Many are eagerly awaiting lower rates to jump back into the housing market, and it’s clear that the expected interest rate cuts in the latter half of 2024 will bolster the pent-up demand for housing.”

Meanwhile, the survey noted Canadians are feeling less pessimistic about their personal finances, with 28% feeling that they are in a better financial position than they were a year ago, up from 20%. A decreasing number — 39%, down from 44% — hold the opposite view.


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Respondents plan to increase their spending on groceries (87%), gas (78%), insurance (auto, 69%; home, 70%; health, 53%), rent (58%) and retirement savings (36%) next year compared to the past year.

Although perceptions on the overall affordability of home ownership remain steady with 87% feeling it is less affordable than a year ago, slightly more than half (53%) say they would consider moving to a different city, province or country to purchase an affordable residence.

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