Government Spending

— Apr 18, 2019
Printer-friendly version
Examining Federal Debt in Canada by Prime Minister Since Confederation

Examining Federal Debt in Canada by Prime Minister Since Confederation finds that by the end of his first term later this year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will have increased federal debt by 5.6 per cent per person—the largest increase of any prime minister in Canadian history who didn’t govern during a world war or recession. By contrast, other recent Liberal prime ministers such as Jean Chrétien, Paul Martin and Lester Pearson who also never governed during a world war or recession all cut per-person debt—Chrétien by 13 per cent, Martin by 8 per cent and Pearson by 6 per cent.

— Apr 9, 2019
Printer-friendly version
A Turning Point or More of the Same? Ontario's Fiscal Choices in Budget 2019

A Turning Point or More of the Same? Ontario's Fiscal Choices in Budget 2019 finds that the Ontario provincial government could balance the budget by 2020/21 with a one per cent reduction in program spending in each of the next two years. A 9.8 per cent reduction over the next two years would not only achieve balance, but would also allow the government to lower taxes and increase tax competitiveness.

— Mar 14, 2019
Printer-friendly version
A Spending Framework for Alberta: Balancing the Need for Deficit Elimination and Tax Reform

A Spending Framework for Alberta: Balancing the Need for Deficit Elimination and Tax Reform finds that the Alberta government could balance its budget by 2021/22—and create the fiscal room for much-needed tax relief—if program spending were cut by 10.9 per cent over the next three years. While a 10.9 per cent spending reduction would be significant, it is substantially smaller than the reductions implemented by the Klein government in the 1990s. It would also bring Alberta’s per-person spending closer into line with neighbouring British Columbia, which currently spends 21 per cent less per person than Alberta does.

— Jan 31, 2019
Printer-friendly version
Education Spending in Public Schools in Canada: 2019 Edition

Education Spending and Public School Enrolment in Canada, 2019 finds that spending on public schools across Canada increased in every province over the past decade by an average of 17.3 per cent, on a per-student basis, after adjusting for inflation. Nominally, spending increased from about $49 billion in 2006/07 to nearly $65 billion in 2015/16, the most recent year of available Statistics Canada data. Teacher and staff compensation (salaries, pensions and benefits) accounted for 84 per cent of that increased spending, rising from $35 billion to more than $48 billion over the same 10-year period.

— Jan 22, 2019
Printer-friendly version

Prime Ministers and Government Spending, 2019 tracks annual per person program spending (adjusted for inflation) by prime ministers since Confederation, and finds that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has now recorded two of the three years with the highest levels of government spending in Canadian history, including times of war and recession. The all-time high was recorded by Prime Minister Stephen Harper during the 2009 recession.

— Oct 11, 2018
Printer-friendly version
Capital Investment in Canada: An International Comparison

Capital Investment in Canada: An International Comparison finds that Canada’s anemic growth rate of capital investment—which has slowed to a 40-year low—has lagged behind growth rates in the United States and other developed countries in recent years. Investment growth has been especially weak in Canada’s business sector, particularly in the areas of machinery, equipment and intellectual property.

Government Spending Research Experts