After the introduction of the HST, BC is number one in Canada in falling restaurant sales. That’s the word out of Statistics Canada.
“In July, five provinces posted lower sales, with the largest declines in British Columbia (-1.9%), Quebec (-1.5%), Alberta (-1.4%) and Ontario (-1.4%)”.
A secret report on the economic consequences of the HST released through a lengthy FOI process this summer predicted five years of job loss, higher prices and economic harm before any positive gains would be realized.
“Part of the reason,” said the Finance ministry about the report’s findings, “is that the negative effect of higher consumption taxes occurs faster than the positive effect of lower taxes on investment goods and exports. The study suggests that it may take five or more years before the impact on GDP is positive and even longer for real wages and job numbers to recover.”
The latest Statistics Canada information on restaurant sales suggests the authors of that report on the HST knew what they were talking about.
And could this have come at a worse time? Today Statistics Canada is reporting that Canada’s economy lost steam over the last quarter, with GDP falling .1%. Struggling sectors include food services and services – the sectors worst hit by the HST.
So, a struggling economy and a new consumer tax that reduces growth and jobs for five years: What am I not seeing that makes the HST the best thing we can do for our economy right now – or so say the economic geniuses that run the BC Liberal Party?
There’s more on the GDP decline. CTV is reporting that the TD Bank is blaming it on the introduction of the HST.
‘TD Bank economist Diana Petramala said the decline was not completely unexpected. “It’s not all that surprising that Canadian economic growth has started to unwind given the introduction of the harmonized sales tax (HST) in Ontario and B.C. and as the positive impact from stimulus spending is beginning to wane,” Petramala said in a note to clients.’