Second quarter GDP data was recently released for Canada and the United States. Second quarter growth in both countries was slow. The modest surprise, especially given all of the talk about the weak U.S. economy was the slightly negative second quarter GDP growth rate for Canada. For Canada, second quarter GDP fell by 0.1% (or 0.4% on an annual basis) compared to the first quarter. This is not a very big number, but it is a negative number. This means that the Canadian economy is half way towards a recession. On the other hand, these numbers do get revised in the coming months and there is a chance that the revised second quarter GDP number will be positive. Consumption, business investment and government spending continued growing slowly between Q1 and Q2. The negative Q2 growth rate comes from imports out pacing exports. One thing is for certain. The recovery (if there ever was one) from the most recent recession has stalled.
In the charts below, Canadian growth rates are quarter over quarter, while US growth rates are annualized quarter over quarter.