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Economic Profile Trends

Saskatoon is Saskatchewan's largest city. With a growing population and a thriving business sector, Saskatoon has positioned itself as an attractive and vibrant city that is a primary engine of the Saskatchewan economy. Notwithstanding the global economic challenges, Saskatoon's diverse economy, low unemployment, healthy real estate market, and rising incomes, all indicate that Saskatoon will continue to grow and prosper, becoming an even more attractive and competitive city.

One factor driving Saskatoon's population growth is the abundance of job opportunities that are available in the city. Employment growth in 2014 and 2015 was steady and the economy continues to be strong.

Demographic Trends

According to Statistics Canada, the population of the Saskatoon CMA, which includes cities and towns such as Martensville, Warman, and Delisle, was 304,975 as of July 1, 2015. Saskatoon CMA's population increased by 2.0 % the fourth largest increase in Canada in 2014/2015. The CMA's of Kelowna (3.1 %), Calgary and Edmonton (2.4%) had the largest and second largest population increases.  Regina followed Saskatoon with a 1.9% increase.

More locally, the City of Saskatoon's internal projections and estimates indicate that as of December 31, 2015, Saskatoon's population had reached 262,900. Since 2010, the city has added nearly 38,000 new residents averaging 7,500 new residents per year.

Saskatoon's strong population growth has been driven primarily by international immigration. 56% of net migration in the CMA has come from international immigration. As well, more people are moving to, rather than moving from, Saskatoon from other cities and communities across Canada and Saskatchewan.

Saskatoon CMA is also experiencing a "baby boom" of sorts. This positive trajectory indicates that more daycare spaces, schools, and recreation facilities will be required to accommodate this growth.

Economic Trends

Saskatoon's unemployment rate was reported as 5.8% by the Conference Board of Canada in April 2016.

Inflation

Saskatoon's Consumer Price Index (CPI) continue to increase annually; with a 2.4% increase from 2014-2015

A Municipal Price Index (MPI) for the City of Saskatoon is calculated for future budgeting benchmarks and reviewed annually.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Mid-year 2016, the real GDP (in 2007 millions) for the Saskatoon region was $17,288.6 million.

Retail Sales

Saskatoon is expected to see positive retail sales growth.

Disposable Income

Since 2008, Saskatoon's disposable income growth has fluctuated annually.  The annual increase is expected to average around 4.3% for the next few years.

Building Permits

For cities, a good indicator of economic activity is the number of building permits issued each year. In 2015, the City of Saskatoon issued 4,327 building permits. The value of the building permits issued in 2015 was $1,020,394.  This is a slight decrease from the record high of 5,196 building permits issued in 2012 for the value of $1,082,101.

Business Licenses

In 2015, the City issued 1,243 new business licenses (441 commercial, and 802 home-based businesses). The total number of businesses licensed has increased by just under 10% since 2011.