Economy To Pick Up Steam

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    Canada’s economy grew at a moderate pace in the final quarter of 2011 and is expected to pick up steam in the year ahead, says an ‘RBC Economic Outlook.’ It says burgeoning signs of strength in the U.S. economy, low interest rates, solid balance sheets across corporate Canada, and elevated commodity prices are setting the stage for continued economic expansion. It is forecasting real GDP to increase by 2.6 per cent in both 2012 and 2013. “Canada’s economic growth clocked in at 2.5 per cent in 2011, shaking off a few speed bumps in the middle of the year and ending the fourth quarter with only moderate real GDP growth of 1.8 per cent,” says Craig Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist. “The country’s main engines of economic activity from the early days of the recovery ‒ consumer spending and residential investment ‒ are likely to play supplementary roles as the economy shifts into slightly higher gear on the road ahead.”