After floods, BMO to boost Alberta business lending by up to $1B
Cars sit parked in flood water in a restricted neighborhood in High River, Alta., Thursday, July 4, 2013. (Jeff McIntosh / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Monday, July 22, 2013 1:11PM EDT
CALGARY -- The Bank of Montreal says it's increasing the amount of credit available to Alberta businesses by as much as $1 billion as the province recovers from the worst flooding in its history.
BMO says it will be increasing the $4 billion in lending it has already authorized for the province by up to 25 per cent.
Robert Hayes, the BMO executive in charge of Alberta, says the money will provide small and medium-sized businesses with more certainty as they rebuild.
He says bankers will make lending decisions locally.
BMO senior economist Robert Kavcic says despite the floods, Alberta's economic outlook is bright.
He says the province on pace to post above-average economic growth of 2.2 per cent this year and 3.3 per cent in 2014, as higher oil prices boost both the energy sector and provincial finances.