- REUTERS/Chris Wattie
Canada’s Liberal leader Justin Trudeau rode a late campaign surge to a stunning election victory on Monday, toppling Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, according to projections from Canada’s major television networks.
As the numbers rolled in, Harper resigned as leader of the Conservative Party.
This is the first time in 9 1/2 years that Canada has had a new leader.
Harper, who had been prime minister since early 2006, had led a majority government since 2011.
Now Harper is on his way out, and Trudeau – the son of former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, one of the most popular leaders in Canadian history – will be the next leader of Canada.
Here’s what the analysts had to say:
BART WAKABAYASHI, HEAD OF FOREIGN EXCHANGE FOR STATE STREET GLOBAL MARKETS, TOKYO
“The hype is much more than the bite, but it’s obviously headlines to trade off. I think we’ll continue to trade Canada as a commodities currency more than any other factor.”
“It wasn’t that long ago that we were at par, and if you look back and compare charts, it’s pretty much all about commodities and oil, so that link is very hard to shake off and will continue to dominate dollar/CAD direction.”
SHACHI KURL, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, ANGUS REID INSTITUTE, VANCOUVER
“We have never seen such a volatile electorate as we’ve seen tonight and over the course of this campaign, with nearly half of those who said they had not yet locked in their votes and were likely to vote saying that they would make up their mind on election day. So, clearly, a lot of people waiting, waiting, waiting till the last minute. And also momentum is key. They have a desire to back a winner, they have a desire to read the tea leaves, they want to see who is ahead.”
“This campaign was always going to be about which left-of-centre party the voters chose coalesce around. At the beginning of this campaign it was the NDP and then, very precipitously, it became more about coalescing around the Liberals.”
“The trend line continued. NDP voters consciously voted for the Liberals in order to fulfill their desire for change and see an end to the Conservative era.”
RÉMI LÉGER, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF POLITICAL SCIENCE, SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY, VANCOUVER
“This is Trudeaumania. It’s unbelievable. There’s no polls that were projecting this … so it’s quite impressive, what they’ve been able to do.
“As for what’s next, the Liberals had a campaign with a lot of promises and a lot of changes. They’ve talked about decriminalizing marijuana, they’ve talked about reforming the electoral system, they’ve talked about reforming the Senate – so now you have a majority, do you actually go through with all those promises?
“I think in their wildest dreams they weren’t expecting a majority, but now they have the majority, can they actually follow through on some of those big, innovative promises that were part of their campaign.”
RICHARD JOHNSTON, CANADA RESEARCH CHAIR IN PUBLIC OPINION, ELECTIONS, AND REPRESENTATION, UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA, VANCOUVER
“Harper has been the leader of his party for 12 years, prime minister for 9 1/2. He’s going to move on anyway; it’s the natural progression of things anyway.”
“For Mulcair, it’s a profound humiliation, at the moment at least. It looks as if the West could change this, but as things stand, every gain incurred by the NDP in 2011 will be wiped out. Back to square one. It’s astonishing.”
“We all underestimated Justin Trudeau. If, for example, we see a turnout surge. If the story is increased turnout, I think the story will be that young people saw a potential prime minister that looks like them, talks like them and is the future. Just like his dad was.”
- REUTERS/Chris Wattie
DAVID TULK, CHIEF CANADA MACRO STRATEGIST AT TD SECURITIES, TORONTO
“We’ve looked at past elections and that does show that there is just a little bit of Canadian dollar weakness just as a new leader is tested and as the new platforms and directions for policy are revealed.”
“It won’t have too much of an impact over the near-term outlook. If anything, its impact comes at a time where, for instance, the Bank of Canada has already focused the outlook gap will be closed. In a way, from a currency perspective, there’s a lot of other stuff to get through before we start to contemplate a scenario of late 2016, early 2017 lift to the economy.”
“Truth be told, I think what we’ll see will be a fairly choppy range over the next couple of months until some of these themes resolve themselves one way or the other.”
Bonds have been “very illiquid at this stage. But the only tiny thing we’ve been seeing thus far is a little bit of selling in the long end to go into maybe provincial debt … Again, we have no indication where that extra issuance from the Liberal Party will come from, but given that’s its direction is likely toward infrastructure spending, what that might end up doing is you might try to match the liabilities to the life of those assets.
“So to see some of that taking place in the long end of the curve makes some sense, at least, and would contribute to slightly steeper curve with the long end underperforming.”
ELIAS HADDAD, DIRECTOR CURRENCY AND INTERNATIONAL ECONOMICS, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA, SYDNEY
“CAD is under modest downside pressure versus USD and AUD after the Liberals unexpectedly won (based on projections) a majority government for the first time since 2004. The Liberals have a mostly inexperienced team about to govern the country and that may be unsettling the markets a bit.
“However, in our view, a majority Liberal government is neutral for CAD. The Liberals plan to run modest budget deficits for the next three years, raise taxes on incomes over C$200,000 but double infrastructure spending.”
- REUTERS/Petr Josek
YOUSSEF ZOHNY, PORTFOLIO MANAGER AT STENNERZOHNY INVESTMENT PARTNERS+ OF RICHARDSON GMP LTD, VANCOUVER
“It’s going to be a bit of a surprise to the markets. It seems like where it’s going to be felt largely will be initially in the Canadian dollar, it will likely see some weakening, and definitely the energy sector. With a new majority government, that’s going to lead to some uncertainty in the energy sector, which should play out over the next few months.”
ELVIS PICARDO, STRATEGIST AND VICE PRESIDENT OF RESEARCH AT GLOBAL SECURITIES, VANCOUVER
“That’s kind of baked into the price, I think. They’ve been trending up for a few weeks,” he said when asked about what the result could mean for infrastructure companies such as SNC Lavalin.
BIPAN RAI, DIRECTOR OF FOREIGN EXCHANGE STRATEGY AT CIBC WORLD MARKETS, TORONTO
“The dominant arbiter of the way the Canadian dollar is going to trade is monetary policy and global growth dynamics, both of which support a weaker loonie. The risk premium associated with electoral uncertainty in Canada is low compared with other countries.
“In the medium term the range is C$1.30-C$1.35, this week we are targeting C$1.32.”
“There has been a small discount built into the Canadian/U.S. spread on account of election uncertainty. We think there will be some knee-jerk widening on the Harper government’s failure to return a majority.”
(Reporting by Lisa Twaronite, Cecile Lefort, Julie Gordon, Nia Williams and Leah Schnurr; Editing by Alan Crosby)