An Unsurprising Correlation

Check this out:

Newfoundland & Labrador Premier Kathy Dunderdale, in a speech to the St. John’s Board of Trade, Febraury 23, 2011 (emphasis added):

“Our province has never been in a stronger position.

GDP growth for 2010 is estimated at 5.4 per cent, the highest growth among provinces.

Retail sales grew by 3.6 per cent from January to November in 2010 compared to the same period in 2009.

Our population increased by 0.3 per cent in 2010, marking the second consecutive year of population gains after 16 years of decline.”

Good news all around.

But wait. Lookie here, in today’s Globe and Mail (emphasis added)

“Alberta saw a net inflow of 5,300 people from other provinces in the first quarter of 2011 — its highest rate of interprovincial migration since the first quarter of 2006, according to Statistics Canada preliminary population data reported Wednesday.

The province saw steady inflows of workers from other parts of Canada between 1995 and 2009, but saw outflows in 2010 for the first time in 15 years.”

What a purely coincidental, totally random, freakish occurrence that the slight population growth in Newfoundland in a short period in time would correspond exactly with a downturn in the Alberta economy. Who ever would have thought…?