Statistics Canada says fourth-quarter growth was driven by a 2.3 per cent increase in business investment compared with the third quarter. (SEAN KILPATRICK / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Economy expands 1.7% in fourth quarter of 2017

Economy expands 1.7% in fourth quarter of 2017 to cap off year of 3% growth

The Canadian economy expanded at a pace of 1.7 per cent over the final three months of 2017, a rate that was below the rapid growth seen in the first half of the year, Statistics Canada reported Friday.

The agency’s latest numbers for real gross domestic product showed the economy grew three per cent for all of 2017, which was a much-stronger pace than 2016 when growth was 1.4 per cent.

The fourth-quarter expansion of 1.7 per cent came in higher than growth in the third quarter, which was revised to 1.5 per cent from 1.7 per cent.

Related: ‘Mega trends’ set to alter economy, society, security

Growth in the fourth quarter was driven by a 2.3 per cent increase in business investment compared with the third quarter, and a 0.5 per cent quarter-over-quarter rise in household spending, the report said.

For all of 2017, the agency said household spending easily made the biggest contribution to growth, followed by inventory and business investment. Exports also grew for the second-straight year with gains in both goods and services.

“Much of this growth was attributable to the first two quarters of 2017, with deceleration observed toward the end of year,” the report said.

The three per cent figure for 2017 matches the projection by private-sector economists that was included in Tuesday’s federal budget. The budget also predicts real GDP growth of 2.2 per cent in 2018 and 1.6 per cent next year.

Statcan revised its real GDP numbers upward for the first and second quarters of 2017.

Related: Bank of Canada hikes interest rate to 1.25%, cites strong economic data

For the first quarter, the estimate was increased to four per cent from 3.7 per cent; for the second quarter, revised growth was 4.4 per cent, up from its initial reading of 4.3 per cent.

By industry throughout 2017, the report said the growth was “widespread” with 18 of the 20 sectors showing increases.

Goods-producing industries expanded 4.6 per cent, compared to two-straight annual contractions of 0.5 per cent in 2016 and 1.7 per cent in 2015. The biggest contribution to growth from the goods-producing industries in 2017 came from natural resources extraction, which expanded 7.8 per cent.

Services industries expanded 2.8 per cent last year for their highest pace of growth since 2011. It was led by a 7.5 per cent boost from the wholesale-trade sector.

Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

COMMUTER ALERT: Serious pedestrian crash closes Pacific Highway

Traffic along 176th Street, 4th to 8th Avenue, is blocked while Mounties continue to investigate.

Giants owner Ron Toigo to get BC Sports Hall of Fame W.A.C. Bennett Award

Head of Langley-based hockey team to be honoured at May induction gala

A weekend of history in Fort Langley

Louis Riel Day on Nov. 17; Douglas Day on Nov. 18.

UPDATED: Touching note left on Langley veteran’s windshield

A veteran hopes the writers of a note know how much he was touched by their kind words. They do.

VIDEO: Young Langley boy uses his grief to help other kids suffering loss

Thursday Langley Hospice hosts its Paint the Town Blue campaign to spotlight child bereavement.

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

CFL will use extra on-field official to watch for illegal blows to quarterback

If the extra official sees an illegal blow that has not already been flagged, they will advise the head referee, who can then assess a penalty for roughing the passer

Older B.C. drivers subsidizing younger ones, study finds

ICBC protects higher-risk drivers, pays for testing costs

5 to start your day

A choice on light rail versus SkyTrain for Surrey, a Chilliwack teacher suspended for touching a colleague’s buttocks and more

EU divorce deal in peril after two UK Cabinet ministers quit

Negotiators from Britain and the European Union have struck a proposed divorce deal that will be presented to politicians on both sides for approval, officials in London and Brussels said Tuesday.

Feds respond to sexual assault investigation at B.C. naval base

Report of Oct. 5 sexual assault on Vancouver Island base taken over by Canadian Forces National Investigation Service

Northern California fire death toll at 56; 130 missing

Many of the missing are elderly and from Magalia, a forested town of about 11,000 to the north of Paradise.

Canfor to buy 70 per cent stake in Swedish Vida Group for $580 million

The privately held company has nine sawmills in southern Sweden with an annual production capacity of 1.1 billion board feet.

Saudi prosecutor seeks death penalty in Khashoggi’s killing

Saudi Arabia’s top prosecutor is recommending the death penalty for five suspects charged with ordering and carrying out the killing of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi.

Most Read