Paul Martin’s Business Update – February 19th, 2015
The diversity of the provincial economy was evident in the wholesale numbers posted for December.
Wholesale is usually a precursor to volumes we can expect to see in the retail sector but it also includes sales to retail customers outside the province so it can be a bit of a proxy for exports as well.
The new numbers on sales volumes generated by those in the wholesale community in December were quite remarkable and provide a dramatic counterpoint to the noise about an economic downturn the wake of falling oil prices.
We tend to forget that Saskatchewan is not only an oil province or a grain producer or potash miner. Yes, we are all of those but we’re also a manufacturer and a service provider. That diversity showed up in these particular figures.
December’s sales in this sector surpassed the $2.4 billion mark, roughly 25-percent higher than in December a year ago. A good comparison is Manitoba, a province with a population base about 10-percent higher than ours….Saskatchewan’s results were roughly a billion dollars or 30-percent higher in December.