Business Outlook Survey - data by sector (four-quarter moving averages)

Quarterly results from the Business Outlook Survey (BOS) are based on interviews with about 10 firms in the primary sector, 23 in the manufacturing sector, 21 in the CITU sector, 15 in the trade sector, 14 in the FIRE sector and 16 in the CPBS sector (sectors are defined below). This page presents BOS data for each of these sectors. For more information, please see the backgrounder.

Sectors are defined by the grouping of North American Industry Classification System codes as follows: primary sector: 11 and 21; manufacturing: 311–339; construction, information and cultural industries (CITU): 22, 23, 48, 49 and 51; trade: 41, 44 and 45; finance, insurance, real estate and leasing (FIRE): 52–53; and commercial, personal and business services (CPBS): 54, 55, 56, 71, 72 and 81. Because the responses are presented here as four-quarter moving averages, these charts may not show the same movements as the aggregate BOS data published each quarter.

Business activity

Chart 1: Past sales growth

* Percentage of firms reporting faster growth minus the percentage reporting slower growth


Chart 2: Future sales growth

* Percentage of firms expecting faster growth minus the percentage expecting slower growth
† Percentage of firms reporting that indicators have improved minus the percentage reporting that indicators have deteriorated


Chart 3: Investment in machinery and equipment

* Percentage of firms expecting higher investment minus the percentage expecting lower investment


Chart 4: Credit conditions

* Percentage of firms reporting tightened terms and conditions minus the percentage reporting eased terms and conditions. For this question, the balance of opinion excludes firms that responded “not applicable.”


Chart 5: Future employment level

* Percentage of firms expecting higher levels of employment minus the percentage expecting lower levels


Pressures on production capacity

Chart 6: Ability to meet demand

* Share of firms reporting some or significant difficulty


Chart 7: Labour shortages

* Share of firms reporting labour shortages
† Percentage of firms reporting more intense labour shortages minus the percentage reporting less intense labour shortages


Wages, prices and inflation

Chart 8: Wage growth

* Percentage of firms expecting higher labour cost increases minus the percentage expecting lower labour cost increases


Chart 9: Input price inflation

* Percentage of firms expecting greater price increases minus the percentage expecting lesser price increases


Chart 10: Output price inflation

* Percentage of firms expecting greater price increases minus the percentage expecting lesser price increases


Chart 11a: Inflation expectations of firms in the primary sector


Chart 11b: Inflation expectations of firms in the manufacturing sector


Chart 11c: Inflation expectations of firms in the CITU sector


Chart 11d: Inflation expectations of firms in the trade sector


Chart 11e: Inflation expectations of firms in the FIRE sector


Chart 11f: Inflation expectations of firms in the CPBS sector