BMO Financial Group
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BMO Financial Group

May 08, 2013 08:00 ET

BMO Blue Book: Quebec Growth to Pick Up in 2014

- GDP growth of 1.2 per cent expected in 2013, climbing to 1.8 per cent in 2014; Canada GDP growth expected to be 1.6 per cent in 2013, 2.3 per cent in 2014

- Strength in construction and health care industries driving growth

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - May 8, 2013) - Quebec's economy is set to grow 1.2 per cent in 2013 and 1.8 per cent next year, according to the BMO Blue Book released today by BMO Capital Markets Economics and BMO Commercial Banking. Much like the U.S. Federal Reserve's Beige Book, the BMO Blue Book combines the expertise of BMO's economists with information on current business conditions provided to BMO's commercial bankers by local businesspeople.

"Real GDP expanded just 1.0 per cent in 2012, with economic headwinds compounded by student protest and labour disputes," said Robert Kavcic, Senior Economist, BMO Capital Markets. "Growth should pick up to 1.2 per cent this year as these temporary factors fade."

Employment, meanwhile, was up a strong 2.6 per cent per cent, year-over-year, in the first quarter of 2013. "While public-sector employment declined 1.8 per cent year-over-year, the private sector more than picked up the slack, up 4.1 per cent year-over-year," stated Mr. Kavcic. "Construction and health care were especially strong, although the latter has lost some momentum in recent months and the former is expected to soften with broader housing market trends."

"Quebec businesses do understand the need to invest in their operations to improve productivity, but are choosing to be very selective and cost-conscious with their projects, investments and equipment purchases," said Mario Rigante, Vice President, Commercial Banking, Montreal District, BMO Bank of Montreal, "The continued accessibility of capital has given clients the opportunity to make the leap."

Mr. Rigante added that BMO is armed with a highly-skilled team of experts that can make lending decisions at the local level to help its commercial clients boost productivity, expand into new markets and make strategic investment decisions that will help propel growth and drive success.

The full BMO Blue Book can be downloaded at www.bmocm.com/economics.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $542 billion as at January 31, 2013, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

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