2016 turned out to be worse than 2015 for Albertans
Despite an increase in oil and gas extraction, Alberta's GDP contracted 3.8% in 2016, making it the worst performing province for the year. The 2016 recession follows a 3.7% contraction in 2015.
The last two consecutive annual contractions in Alberta were in 1982 and 1983.
Despite the May wildfires and maintenance shutdowns at several upgraders, bitumen extraction increased 1.0%. Conventional oil extraction also edged up 0.2%.
However, a big drop in capital spending for the energy sector caused a sizeable decline in engineering construction, oil & gas services, manufacturing and wholesale trade of machinery and equipment.
Residential construction also contracted 20% as more Albertans left the province. Housing starts were the lowest since 1997.
Chemicals manufacturing was a rare bright spot, increasing 7.8%.
Saskatchewan was the only other province to experience a recession in 2016. GDP contracted 1.0% after falling 1.3% the previous year. Newfoundland and Labrador emerged from recession in 2016, expanding 1.9% on higher output from the Hibernia oilfield and ongoing construction of its $11.7 billion Muskrat Falls hydroelectric power project.
STATISTICS CANADA GDP BY INDUSTRY: PROVINCES AND TERRITORIES, 2016