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Canada-U.S. price gap

Canadian consumers still paying more despite parity

Last Updated: June 13, 2012

All prices in Canadian dollars

Cross-border shopping is predicted to rise in summer 2012 as a result of a several factors, including an increase in duty-free limits for Canadians bringing goods back into the country. The increase comes at the same time a Senate committee is exploring why Canadian consumers continue to pay more for goods. The Bank of Canada has attributed pricing differences between products in the U.S. and Canada to taxes, labour costs, productivity gaps and transportation costs. A random sampling of a basket of goods by BMO Capital Markets found that Canadian retail prices are roughly 13 per cent above U.S. levels, before taxes and adjusted for the exchange rate. Click on the tabs below for a look at a few products in the BMO basket.


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