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Business Outlook Survey

Four times a year, our regional offices interview business leaders from about 100 firms to gather a broad range of economic perspectives that help us fulfill our mandate as Canada’s central bank.

The results of these interviews are available in our quarterly Business Outlook Surveys (BOS). View the recent survey data and references for more information.

Receive notification by email whenever new surveys are added to the website.


Firms are selected from across Canada in accordance with the composition of the country's gross domestic product. They give us their views on:

  • topics of interest to the Bank of Canada, such as demand and capacity pressures;
  • forward-looking views that these firms hold on economic activity.

The BOS results are presented quarterly to the Bank’s Governing Council as a timely input into the monetary policy decision-making process.


  • The opinions expressed are those of the respondents, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Bank of Canada.
  • The method of sample selection ensures a good cross-section of opinion. Nevertheless, the statistical reliability of the survey is limited, given the small sample size.

Industry participation

A rotating, and regularly updated, roster of businesses participates in the survey. Learn why we need business participation and how we engage with businesses.

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Latest Business Outlook Surveys

July 15, 2024

Business Outlook Survey—Second Quarter of 2024

Results from the Business Outlook Survey and the Business Leaders’ Pulse continue to signal weak demand, which is weighing on investment and hiring plans. While few firms are planning layoffs, labour markets are widely seen as continuing to soften. Although they remain above average, wage and inflation expectations are easing. Most firms that made abnormally large price increases in the past 12 months do not plan to do so again in the coming year.
April 1, 2024

Business Outlook Survey—First Quarter of 2024

Business sentiment and sales growth expectations have stopped falling, according to firms responding to the Business Outlook Survey and the Business Leaders’ Pulse. But demand remains subdued, which is allowing price pressures and the labour market to ease. As a result, fewer firms than in the previous survey are planning unusually large or frequent price increases over the next 12 months.
January 15, 2024

Business Outlook Survey—Fourth Quarter of 2023

Results from the Business Outlook Survey and the Business Leaders’ Pulse show that with high interest rates and soft demand, firms’ sales growth has slowed over the past 12 months. Firms are less optimistic about current business conditions than they were last quarter, but they expect their sales growth to stabilize in the coming year. With competition returning and demand remaining soft, businesses’ pricing behaviour is slowly returning to normal.
October 16, 2023

Business Outlook Survey—Third Quarter of 2023

Results from the Business Outlook Survey for the third quarter of 2023, along with those from the July, August and September 2023 Business Leaders’ Pulse surveys suggest that on balance, firms are still planning to make larger and more frequent price increases than they did before the COVID-19 pandemic. Further, businesses' outlook for demand has continued to weaken as higher interest rates impact the economy.

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