Alberta is in for another rocky year, according to the latest economic forecast from ATB Financial.
The firm expects the provincial GDP to shrink by 0.5% in 2016.
“While negative, that’s still less than last year’s real GDP contraction of an estimated one per cent (final numbers are not yet in),” says ATB.
They also forecast that oil prices will hover around $30 to $40 a barrel for the first half of the year and perhaps move up to $50 to $55 a barrel by the end of the year.
“This would require global demand to hold up, some pullback in OPEC supply (particularly in Venezuela and Nigeria) and less non-OPEC oil coming onto the market due to the drop of new investment in 2014 and 2015,” they add.
Despite the decline in oil growth, Alberta can still rely somewhat on their successful agriculture, forestry, and tourism business. The low Canadian dollar will also help out by encouraging more U.S. tourists to visit the province.
This news come shortly after the Calgary Real Estate Board forecast Alberta home sales would drop 3.4% in 2016 due to low sales activity and an increase in supply.