Canada is on track of balancing its 2015 budget. Joe Oliver, the finance minister has signalled that the government could announce some tax relief soon. This announcement was made after he met private-sector economists in the city of Toronto. Joe said that the federal government was feeling comfortable of achieving the budget surplus. He says that the government is committed to reducing taxes for hardworking families. He however did not come out with any details of these tax cuts. But many are expecting that this would come in the government’s fall economic and fiscal update.
He did not comment on whether this included the introduction of income-splitting for families, something that would allow couples with young kids to bring down their tax burden by splitting up to 50,000 Canadian dollars of their incomes yearly for tax purposes. There has been some controversy on income splitting, as some people believe that it would disproportionately benefit higher-income homes.
Joe stressed that Canada’s economy was stronger now, in spite of uncertain global economic conditions and weak recovery. In the last update, economists were not this optimistic, he pointed out. The government had cut their 2014 gross domestic product growth outlook to 2.2% from the projected 2.3% projected in the 2014 budget plan. The IMF too had cut their global outlook. Following this, the largest economy of Europe, Germany, had also brought down its expansion forecast for the year, and also the next one.
The economy of Canada has posted better-than-expected growth. Apparently, the robust US expansion has helped. However there are concerns on whether this momentum in the United States will sustain because many other large global economies aren’t doing all that great.
Policy makers in Canada tend to depend on demand for commodities for driving tax revenue and growth. Crude oil prices have gone down by about 20% since the middle of June. This might hurt a few Canadian producers. However on the other hand, this is good news for consumers because they will have be able to enjoy lower energy prices.
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