Release of the 2nd Wave of the AmCham Canada - Nanos Research U.S. Business Confidence Survey Presented by PNC Bank

Monday, June 25, 2018

AmCham Canada Survey of U.S. Business Confidence in Canada Shows Positive Outlook with Potential Storm Clouds on the Horizon

Ottawa – June 25, 2018. The American Chamber of Commerce in Canada (AmCham Canada) today released the findings of its semi-annual survey of U.S. business confidence in Canada. According to AmCham Canada Chairman Rick Tachuk this edition of the survey highlights continued positive business sentiment by U.S. companies operating in Canada despite on-going uncertainty surrounding the NAFTA Modernization and challenges to U.S. – Canada trade relations overall. “U.S. businesses remain optimistic for future sales despite increased fear of a weakening Canadian economy, new U.S. tax changes and uncertainty with NAFTA”, says Tachuk.

The AmCham Canada-Nanos Research U.S. Business Confidence Survey, presented by PNC Bank, provides a semi-annual measure of the confidence of U.S.- owned businesses operating in Canada seeking to assess: future trends in employment; perceptions of the economic climate; the business environment for U.S. owned businesses in Canada, and the commercial relationship between Canada and the U.S.

Survey Highlights

Overall, US businesses in Canada have a positive outlook in regards to their company’s performance in Canada, believing that their business investment in Canada is positive, that their increases in sales will continue, and that the Canadian economy is moving in the right direction. Participating US businesses believe that the new US tax change will have a somewhat negative or negative impact on their investments in Canada. They are split on confidence in NAFTA compared to six months ago. The number of participating US businesses that believe that the Canadian economy will become weaker in the next six months has more than doubled from 2017 (14%) to 2018 (30%).

  • Participating US businesses most often say they expect the number of employees at their firm to remain the same over the next six months - Asked if they expect the number of people their firm employees to increase, remain the same or decrease in the next six months, 46 per cent of participating US businesses said they expect it will remain the same, while 41 per cent expect it to increase. Nine per cent expect it to decrease. These findings are consistent with the previous wave of research.
  • Participating US businesses most often describe Canada’s current business investment environment as positive – Just under half of participating US businesses (45%) describe today’s environment for their business to invest in Canada as positive, dropping from 54% in 2017. 30 per cent describe it as neutral. Almost a quarter (23%) describe it as negative, up from 14 in the 2017 wave. Seven per cent are unsure.
  • Participating US businesses believe the Canadian economy will not change in the next six months – Nearly half of participating US businesses (48%) think the Canadian economy will not change in the next six months, Almost a third (30%) thinks it will become weaker over the next six months, more than doubling since 2017 (14%). 14 per cent think it will get stronger., falling from 49% in 2017. Seven per cent are unsure.
  • Over half participating US businesses report that sales in Canada for their organization have increased in the past six months – Just over half of US businesses (55%) report that sales in Canada for their organization have increased in the past six months, while 36 per cent report they have stayed the same, less than four per cent say they have decreased. Five per cent are unsure. There are no significant changes from the 2017 wave of research.
  • Over half of participating US businesses expect sales in Canada for their organization to increase the next six months - Asked if they expect sales in Canada for their organization to increase, remain the same or decrease in the next six months, 52 per cent of participating US businesses said they expect they will increase. Thirty-nine per cent say they expect sales will stay the same, while seven per cent expect sales in Canada will decrease and two per cent are unsure. These findings are consistent with the previous wave of research.
  • Over half of participating US businesses think the Canadian economy is moving in the right direction - Asked if they think the Canadian economy is moving in the right or wrong direction, 54 per cent of participating US businesses say it’s moving in the right direction, up from 46% in the 2017. 36 per cent say the wrong direction, increasing from 25 per cent in 2017. Eleven per cent are unsure.
  • Participating US businesses most often say the US tax changes will have a negative or somewhat negative impact on their firms investments in Canada– Asked what the impact of the recent US tax changes will have on their firms investments in Canada, 43% say it would have a somewhat negative (25%) or negative (18%) impact. Only one out of eight US businesses say the tax changes would have a positive (five per cent) or somewhat positive (seven per cent) impact. Thirty-four percent of participating businesses say the tax changes would have no impact, and eleven per cent are unsure.
  • US businesses most often say they are as confident in the North American Free Trade Agreement as six months ago – Thirty-nine per cent of participating US businesses are as confident in NAFTA as they were six months ago, while 25 per cent are more confident, and 29 per cent are less confident in NAFTA than they were six months ago. Seven per cent are unsure.

The findings presented in this report are based on the compiled views of 56 US businesses operating in Canada, collected in an online survey between February 21st and May 25th, 2017. Readers should note that the research is representative of the participants and should notbe projected to any population, elite or general. The 56 participating business have an estimated $1.24T US in global and reported revenue.

The data presented in this research is part of a joint project by AmCham Canada and Nanos Research presented by PNC Bank.



AmCham Canada - Nanos Research - 2nd Wave of U.S. Business Confidence Survey PDF



For more information contact:

Nik Nanos

Chairman, Nanos Research Group

Ottawa (613) 234-4666 ext. 237

Washington DC (202) 697-9924

nik@nanos.co

Rick Tachuk

Chairman, AmCham Canada

Ottawa (613-293-5250)

rtachuk@amchamcanada.ca

David T. Olsen

Regional President and Principal Officer

PNC Bank Canada

Toronto (416) 361-6931

david.t.olsen@pnc.com

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