Publications

All FAO research and analysis is published on our website for the benefit of the Ontario Legislature and the public. 

Reports 

The FAO produces regular reports analyzing the state of the Province's finances, trends in the provincial economy and estimates of the financial impact of bills or other proposals over which the Legislature has jurisdiction.

  • May 2, 2018

    This report provides the FAO’s assessment of the province’s medium-term economic performance and fiscal position, and the reasonableness and risks associated with the government’s fiscal recovery plan.

  • Apr 30, 2018

    This report provides a financial analysis of the OLG’s gaming expansion and sale of the Greater Toronto Area Gaming Bundle.

  • Apr 30, 2018

    This report reviews how the Province measures the effectiveness of its business support programs.

Commentaries 

The FAO posts commentaries on major economic and fiscal developments, providing insights into the broader implications for the Ontario economy and the Ontario government's fiscal plan.

  • Feb 14, 2018

    Ontario posted a strong job gain of 128,400 net new jobs in 2017, as the unemployment rate declined to 6.0 per cent. Looking behind the strong headline results reveals a changing labour market with both improvements for some workers, as well as continuing challenges for others.

  • Jan 23, 2018

    In 2016, the average Ontario household owed nearly $154,000, representing 171 per cent of household disposable income. As interest rates increase, the share of household income spent on debt payments is expected to rise from 13.9 per cent in 2016 to 15.3 per cent by 2021. For the average household, the FAO expects annual debt payments to increase by $3,000 to $15,500 by 2021.

  • Sep 12, 2017

    As part of the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, the government proposes to raise Ontario’s general minimum wage from its current rate of $11.40 per hour to $14 per hour on January 1, 2018 and $15 per hour the following year. While almost 1.6 million workers will benefit from the increase, a significant number of lower wage workers will lose their jobs and some businesses will struggle to cover higher payroll costs.

Backgrounders

FAO backgrounders provide primarily descriptive information on issues of interest to Members of Provincial Parliament. Backgrounders are based on information that the FAO has received from the Province.

  • Mar 6, 2018

    This backgrounder includes a list of 2017-18 service fee rate changes, a discussion of the growth rate of service fee revenue, and a review of the cost recovery ratios for a selection of service fee categories.

  • Aug 30, 2016

    Ontario’s debt is rated by four principal international credit rating agencies, which typically publish an annual update of their view of the province’s finances and the quality of Ontario’s debt. 
    Following the tabling of Ontario’s 2016 Budget, each of the four rating agencies affirmed their current rating of Ontario’s debt, indicating that they believe the province has taken adequate steps on both revenues and expenditures to achieve its plan to restore fiscal balance by 2017-18.  
    However, if Ontario’s fiscal position deteriorates beyond 2017-18, either through an easing of expenditure restraint or unexpected revenue weakness, the agencies could be expected to lower Ontario’s credit rating, which could lead to higher borrowing costs and a more challenging fiscal position.

  • Jun 7, 2016

    The Province forecasts that it will collect $2.74 billion in service fee revenue in 2016-17. This backgrounder provides a partial list of changes to Provincial service fee rates planned for 2016-17 and includes a discussion of the growth rate of service fee revenue. Service fee revenue has increased by an average of 6.8% a year since 2011-12, largely due to the increase in revenue from vehicle and driver registration fees.