Bad news expected for Flaherty at meeting with private sector economists

OTTAWA – Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is expected to receive a dose of bad news today when he meets with private sector economists.

They are expected to update the minister with their latest forecasts for the economy ahead of the upcoming federal budget.

Last week, Statistics Canada reported the economy was pretty much stalled at the end of last year as it recorded another disappointing quarter of growth in the last three months of 2012.

However, Flaherty has already ruled out any new stimulus, which he has referred to as “risky spending schemes.”

He has said the government will need to work harder to find the savings to meet its goals in its economic action plan.

Flaherty has suggested the government could close some tax loopholes and may also look at program spending, including trimming programs that are no longer a high priority.