Canada: An Introduction
The message from Canada is that business is okay, but could be better. Unemployment is low (6.3%), and the currency rate has improved substantially (CA .81 vs. U.S. 1.0). The real estate market is being characterized as “slumbering” as prices drop in many areas; a correction is underway that some experts say “now rivals the 2008 downturn.”
Year-to-year home resales declined -11.9% throughout Canada; -8.8% in Vancouver; -5.0% in Calgary; a whopping -40.7% in Toronto, and a plus 14.5% in Montréal.
A major concern for those in the hearth industry is the Zero Net program being implemented in Metro Vancouver. Natural gas is being eliminated as the local government attempts to become the Greenest city on the planet. A major portion of the Canadian hearth industry could become a casualty of that effort, but the industry is fighting back.
Other cities embarking on a similar quest are Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Toronto, as well as London, Sydney, Copenhagen, Berlin, Paris and Stockholm.