The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This study investigates the impact of the current financial crisis on Canada's potential GDP growth. Using a simple accounting framework to decompose trend GDP growth into changes in capital, labor services and total factor productivity, we find a sizeable drop in Canadian potential growth in the short term. The estimated decline of about 1 percentage point originates from a sharply decelerating capital stock accumulation (as investment has dropped steeply) and a rising long-term unemployment rate (which would raise equilibrium unemployment rates). However, over the medium term, we expect Canada's potential GDP growth to gradually rise to around 2 percent, below the pre-crisis growth rate, mostly reflecting the effects of population aging and a secular decline in average working hours.