Canada Just Saw The Biggest Q4 For Residents Permanently Leaving Since The 1970s

Canadians are packing up and leaving at a fast rate, during a traditionally slow period. Statistics Canada (Stat Can) data shows emigration, the act of leaving permanently, jumped in 2021. The past year showed modest gains, rising to the highest level in half a decade. The fourth quarter is what sticks out though, showing a sudden acceleration. Canada saw the largest Q4 volumes of residents leaving since the 1970s.

Canadian Residents Had The Largest Q4 Outflow Since The 1970s

Canadians left the country at a swift pace in a quarter they usually don’t plan a move. Stat Can estimates 16,901 emigrants in Q4 2021, up 215% from a year before. Annual growth doesn’t mean much, due to the outbreak’s base-effect. Don’t let the distortion allow you to dismiss the whole trend though.

Canadian Fourth Quarter Emigration

The number of Canadians estimated to have left and severed residency ties with Canada, for the fourth quarter.

Source: Statistics Canada; Better Dwelling.

Looking at the longer term, this was a huge fourth quarter. The Q4 2021 emigration was still 55.7% higher than the 5-year median for the quarter prior to 2020. It also happens to be the biggest Q4 for people leaving since 1974.

Canadian Emigration Is The Highest Since 2016

Canadian emigration showed modest growth last year, but highlights the Q4 acceleration. There were 55,935 emigrants in 2021, up 191.5% from a year before. Compared to the 5-year median prior to 2020, last year is 7.1% higher. Annual growth sounds more impressive than it was, but the longer term trend reveals it was still the highest volume since 2016. 

Population Growth Is Still Positive, But Emigration Is A Problem

It’s important to understand this doesn’t mean Canada’s population isn’t growing. The country’s population is aggressively increasing due to higher immigration. For every person that leaves, Canada has managed to attract several more. Unless you’re only trying to balance your tax revenues, net growth while ignoring rising outflows isn’t a positive.

If Canadians leave in higher volumes for sustained periods, it warrants a deep dive. Just looking for much warmer weather is one thing, since it can’t be changed. However, a structural problem forms if the outflow is due to expensive housing or eroding economic opportunity. In the short term, immigration can patch over the loss of people. If they’re leaving for a reason though, immigrants take a wider look at their options.

30 Comments

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  • Estevam 5 months ago

    It’s not just people, paystub too! Most of those permanent residents can work remotely from other provinces.

    • Howard Batman Thornton 5 months ago

      It’s not moving to another province it’s moving completely out of country..

    • Gordon Keating 5 months ago

      The outgrowth in the last quarter was due to Trudeau telling un vaxed Canadians that they were locked down with no ability to get out if not jabbed. So prior to his Nov 30 deadline, many wealthy tax paying Canadians did what he asked. Why would you want to live in a country where the leader despises you and puts you down daily?

  • Agent bob 5 months ago

    The government is responsible for what has now become an unaffordable country.
    They just voted down the 2 year moratorium on non resident buyers whom have has a huge impact on real estate prices in Canada. This is unconscionable.
    They have also let money laundering soar unabated and cause huge price increases as well.
    They have not targeted investors enough and are not charging a high enough penalty on vacant property. It should be at least 5% per year.
    If we don’t want more people leaving and less people coming we better push for more action on these fronts regarding real estate.

  • westcoaster 5 months ago

    Q4 saw some of our brightest and best depart (many were immigrants who brought their skills here). They sold their real estate and made out like kings! Now living like sultans in Georgia and Mexico!

  • Boris 5 months ago

    Well, the quality of life is decreasing and I am about to leave too,

  • Collier 5 months ago

    Believe or not I know of a few acquaintances, adult children of friends, who are relatively affluent that are moving to unusual places like Ecuador and Mexico. It they already own homes however what has really spooked them was how easily “toilet master Trudeau” was able to seize bank accounts over someone else’s political opinion. Young people are willing to take a chance with third world countries with little social services but with a opportunity to be self made.

  • george 5 months ago

    hahaha….i can confirm families from my building left the country last year from north hongcouver and i know 2 others leaving from here this year, one in europe and another in usa.
    i am next to leave next year and won’t let the door hit me…
    unless you come from syria or ukraine, you have to be nuts to move now in canada. if you have kids you are fucked since mr selfie and his criminal gang does not care about young families. good luck to all of you and take care of your life, if not, others will manage it for you.

    • SH 5 months ago

      I left Canada for Western Europe many years ago. I’m now in the early stages of planning my next move to Eastern Europe (not yet sure where, maybe Croatia; lots of research to do) in the next 5-10 years.

      Canada is the worst developed country on the planet for the middle class, by far. Taxes nearly as high as in Western Europe, but for far less in return (and higher home prices relative to income). Low wages yet low worker protections. There is zero incentive remaining for talented young Canadians to tolerate the long winters and high cost of living there.

    • Kraken Val 5 months ago

      isn’t it persian empire there?

  • Mike 5 months ago

    Well that’s 100% the truth.
    Fucked is the only way to say it.

  • Freddy 5 months ago

    Record high emigration is
    the result of a complete failure in government economic policies. Canada’s young educated people don’t want to live in servitude the wealthy land-owner class. The government will now try to attract more immigrants for the wealthy land-owner class to feed upon.

  • Doomcouver 5 months ago

    Net migration is likely going to go deeply negative when the housing bubble finally pops. Canada is a one-trick pony in terms of jobs and economic activity; once we lose housing, economically there’s nothing left to stick around here for.

    • Jane 5 months ago

      Yup I want to leave as well. This country is going straight to shut.
      If I could.spend other people money without a care then tax the shit out of them and make my self look like a hero.

      Don’t think I could live with myself after doing that. But some are above the law ,”politicians, bankers, central planers”.

      Remember they don’t do to jail and serve criminal charges. Just us unfaithful pesents of there system.

      Huh Civil servents our protectors .

    • john hartley 5 months ago

      yes and it is such a tragedy – in this country that is so incredibly well endowed -we are being driven right into the ground by incompetence and self interested oligarchs.

    • Another Jane 5 months ago

      Wow. Interesting statistics.
      Gee, I wonder if there could be some sort of … government policy or, oh, I don’t know, limitations on activities or employment, that could be causing people to feel they need to leave…?

  • Distrust the Gov 5 months ago

    I want to leave, minus ditching my family.
    But the situation in Canada to me looks unhappy.
    Working all the time, just to afford housing. When I could actually live somewhere affordable and enjoy my life. Actually see prospect of retirement and not working over 100 hours a week just to try to get into housing.
    Also the Mandates don’t leave any faith the government cares for your well being or happiness

  • Scott 5 months ago

    Well the stats seem to explain why the Liberals are the “natural governing party.” It wouldappear emigration increases when they get elected. A few more years and there won’t be any alternative points of view in Canada. BTW, Thanks for your brilliant and direct presentation to the committee. Do you have any photos of them looking incredulous?

    • Dictators seem to have that effect 5 months ago

      Interestingly the last big spike in emigration was when Turdeau Senior was PM. Coincidence?

  • Global Village - take advantage of it. 5 months ago

    My humble observation:

    Just from the immigrants I have met in my local area, I think that many skilled Millennials who came here from Third World Countries, have found good opportunities in Canada. They seem to be the educated and are the “brain drain” leaving their countries, and coming to Canada.

    They come here and get good high paying jobs, or work 12 hours a day or do double-shifts. They see opportunities in getting paid time-and-a-half per hour, or double-time on holidays. They are motivated and energized.

    They quality for mortgages based on their family income, or single income, and see that the local Canadians need rental housing and so become Landlords, and have doubled their net worth from holding real estate (house or condo), just in the past 7 years.

    They get Citizenship after a few short years in Canada (I’m not sure, I think it is 3 years?) It’s easier to get that here, than in other countries. Canada also gives $500/month child benefit, per child. They get needed healthcare/operations for free.

    Meanwhile, for Canadians who have lived here a long time, or born here,
    the cost-of-living has become too high. Time for some to seek out cheaper housing and cheaper-cost-of-living ideas, maybe by going to the Third World or Second World. There are lots of videos on YouTube.

    Canada is improving due to the educated “New Canadians”who have been moving here. They fill the skilled job gap (vacancies) that many local Canadians don’t qualify for…. as many of us took education for granted, and didn’t plan out their education in the right direction (mainly in STEM, Healthcare, Tech and Business.)

    Emigration (17,000 outflows in Q4 2021) and Immigration (350,000 in 2021 or approx. 1% of the population each year) is like water, that flows to where it sees a void and benefits.
    Just my 2 cents..

    Being, born and bred and educated in Canada (being white or brown), does not give us a lot of advantage, against the educated, skilled workers who are immigrating here. Also, they can speak multiple languages.

    Planning out my possible “emigration” and speaking to “immigrants”.
    I have never lived in a foreign country, and I only speak one language, English,

  • Tim 5 months ago

    Most overvalued country in the world.

  • Godot 5 months ago

    “The country’s population is aggressively increasing due to higher immigration. For every person that leaves, Canada has managed to attract several more.”
    Ha ha ha – Canada is only attracting economic migrants. Through all the covid bullsh*t of the past two years, the border crossing at Roxham Road has remained open. These ‘refugees’ get the red carpet treatment. Canadian border police help them to carry their bags across the border. They then board luxury buses and are taken to hotels where they live while their ‘refugee’ claims are processed – can take years. All courtesy of the Canadian taxpayer. It is unheard of that any of the ‘refugees’ are ever kicked out of Canada. They are here to stay. They have nothing to contribute to Canada – most are uneducated and unskilled – they are just baby machines.
    CANADA IS BROKEN

  • Joe 5 months ago

    I left Canada in 1994 and never looked back. The opportunities and far lower taxes have allowed me to build a sizable nest egg that would have been impossible in Canada and I am retiring now at 50. My kids love Canada and attended university there, but they also know math – and that it would be impossible for them to realistically do what I did, if they remain in Canada.

  • Tim 5 months ago

    Many Canadians are only here because they can’t get a USA or EU passport.
    I have an EU passport and plan on retiring in Spain or Portugal like a king.

  • Robert Sansom 5 months ago

    Would be gone in a heart beat except for my grandkids.
    Alberta or western separation would be the best of all possible worlds.

  • Nadnono 5 months ago

    we and many others left because of trudeau!!

    an unopposed PM who imposes an experimental vaccine on the people, who sequesters people in the country, even though the vaccine is proven not to work

    so staying in a country that is becoming totalitarian without the people saying anything, or almost nothing, no longer made us want to see our children grow up there after 10 years

    we loved our life in AB but now we chose to get closer to our families

    And it is only the government’s fault!
    Because of trudeau but also the opposition who let it happen, and even supported it

  • Outta Here 5 months ago

    Wait till the border opens for the 20% who have been entrapped due to their personal choice… and when the rest of the 80% notice the big move.

    Canada is like that ugly partner… it has nothing to offer, but you stuck around with them because they were nice. But they have since become very toxic and demanding and need to be cut out of your life while you still have some year left.

    The weather fights you, the government fights you, taxes fight you, over competition fights you, the system fights you, the traffic fights you, the living cost fights you, the non-homogeneous culture fights you… there’s no sense of belonging, no comraderie, no class or honor. It’s not a family any more and it stand for nothing but predatory money making strategies fuelled by the hunger of new incomers. It’s a Wild West of non-Canadians feasting on the remaining resources of what was once a rich country. No one here has any respect for Canada – can’t respect a country that doesn’t respect itself. They’re here to make a quick buck, get the passport and move to the rest of the Western World and ravage the rest of the resources there. Schools are a joke. Hospitals dwell on 30 year old outdated protocols and refuse to look into anything new… and you do t have any other options, because they’re all co trolled by “regulators”… the list just doesn’t end!

    Not worth living “beyond the wall” any more. I’ve already partially settled elsewhere where people shamelessly guard their culture and demographics, and I’m out for good before the end 2022. I’m giving up my 6 figures for a small town and easy life of no obstacles, but true friends and principled community where not everything has a dollar value.

  • Dale 5 months ago

    We left over a year ago because we foresaw restrictions to leave as unvaccinated and the pressure to be vaccinated in order to be part of society or to leave. Just in time as well on that item. Then there are the taxes in Canada that are becoming increasingly unreasonable so it was time to cut our losses before it’s too late and being that we have researched quite abit about the monetary system and how corrupt it is and how it is managed along with the US Federal Reserve- we could see a market collapse coming very soon especially with all the money printing.

  • Grace Lineman 5 months ago

    If I were young enough I would be out of here too, even though my family has been here for over 100 years. I am encouraging my children to leave what has become a banana republic dictatorship. One has and I hope the others will soon. Lament for what could have been a great nation.

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