Spring is Here…. The crocuses might not be up yet, but there are people are popping up all over Alberta and that is good news for a few reasons. Population growth helps stabilize our housing market. It creates demand for new houses which creates construction jobs. It will provide workers for the coming labour shortage.
Interprovincial Migration Notches Upwards by Dan Sumner, Economist – Alberta Treasury Branches
Even though the sun doesn’t always shine when we want it to, and spring often seems to bring more snowstorms instead of flowers, Alberta is a great place to call home!
A total of 2,510 people moved to Wild Rose Country from other provinces during Q4 2010, more than double the amount in the third quarter (+1,155) and way up from Q4 of last year (-2,780), which saw an outflow of interprovincial migrants.
During 2010 as a whole, Alberta net interprovincial migration totalled +6,797, up substantially from 2009 (+1,101). However, compared to the boom years of the mid-decade, Canadians are not exactly flocking to Alberta. In 2006 net interprovincial migration was over 46,000 (see graph).
The new official population count for Alberta now stands at 3,742,800, a rise of 7,700 (+0.2%) from the third quarter of 2010. This rate of growth remains above the national average (+0.1%) and was behind only Manitoba (+0.3%).
Inflows of interprovincial migrants is generally considered a positive for Alberta’s economy as new citizens spend money here, require new homes and, if they have skills which are in short supply, can be a major boon for industries suffering from labour shortages.
One of the main reasons behind migration trends is jobs and job prospects. Currently the unemployment rate in Alberta is 5.7%, which compares to 7.8% nationally and 8.0% in Ontario. And the average wage level is significantly higher here than in all other provinces.
Considering this, combined with other factors such as a more affordable housing market, it seems quite probable that interprovincial migration will pick up in 2011.