Central 1 Credit Union

Central 1 Credit Union

March 29, 2011 17:45 ET

Ontario Stays on Route Laid Out in Previous Budgets, Central 1 Chief Economist Says

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 29, 2011) - Central 1 Chief Economist Helmut Pastrick says the Ontario budget released today by Finance Minister Dwight Duncan sticks to the route mapped out in previous years.

"The topline numbers for the next few years – revenue, expense and deficit – are not dramatically different from what was projected in 2010," Pastrick said. "The route still gets the province to a balanced budget in 2017-18."

Pastrick noted that the major change from previous forecasts was a $3 billion decrease in the deficit for 2010-11, down to $16.7 billion from a projected $19.7 billion.

One area of concern, Pastrick says, is the growing cost of financing the province's debt over the next few years.

"Ontario will be paying 11.5 cents of every dollar of revenue on interest payments and the cost of interest is forecast to rise from $9.5 billion in 2010-11 to $16.3 billion in 2017-18," he noted.

Pastrick is one of the 11 economic forecasters that the province looks to for guidance on its own projections. He projects the Ontario economy will enjoy real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of 2.8 per cent in 2011, 2.6 per cent in 2012, 2.3 per cent in 2013 and 2.9 per cent in 2014.

The budget's planning assumptions are that real GDP will grow by 2.5 per cent in 2011, 2.7 per cent in 2012 and 2013 and 2.6 per cent in 2014.

Central 1

Central 1 is the central financial facility and trade association for the B.C. and Ontario credit union systems. Central 1 represents a consumer-oriented, full-service retail financial system that serves 2.9 million members and holds $70 billion in assets and is owned primarily by its member credit unions, 45 in B.C. and 126 in Ontario.

With offices in Vancouver, Mississauga, and Toronto, Central 1 provides a wide range of services such as liquidity management, direct banking, and flexible payment service solutions. For more information, visit www.central1.com.

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