What with the fall of the federal govt last night and the upcoming election, I'm pretty sure that few paid much attention to today's StatsCan Daily. That's too bad, because there was some interesting stuff there - and of far more importance than the tsunami of polls and election speculation that dominated today's media headlines.
Firstly, there's the current account balance. I suppose it's not surprising that an oil-exporting country is running current-account surpluses these days, but a) energy accounts for only about 10% of Canada's exports, and b) the CAD has appreciated by about one-third over the USD over the past four years. If and when the US current account balance ever unwinds, just what would it take to get the Canada-US trade deficit down?
Then there were the payroll employment, earnings and hours data. Employment is up, unemployment is at its lowest level in 30 years, but average weekly earnings are up 2.8% over 2004 - only slighly above inflation. Why?
Add to that the September employment insurance numbers. New claims are up by 3% over September 2004, but total claims are unchanged. Are those who left finding jobs or dropping out of the labour market?
All interesting questions. None of which will be addressed over the next 2 or 3 months.