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CFIB survey exposes local vs. MNC spending myths

September 2, 2023  By PrintAction Staff

For every dollar spent at a small business, 66 cents on average stays local, according to new data from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). Conversely, only 11 cents of every dollar spent stays in the community when consumers shop at a large multinational business.

An Angus Reid Group public opinion poll conducted on behalf of CFIB reveals that Canadians greatly overestimate how much of each dollar they spend at multinational companies is reinvested locally, while underestimating small businesses’ contributions.

When asked to guess how much money stays local when shopping at a large retailer with a physical location, such as Walmart, on average Canadians said 37 cents. Respondents also thought that 38 cents on average stays in the community when buying from a small business.


“Canadians assume the local contributions by large retailers and small businesses are on par, but the difference is significant. The importance of what shopping local means to our communities can’t be stressed enough,” said Ryan Mallough, CFIB vice-president of legislative affairs for Ontario. “Small businesses support a whole local ecosystem. They source their goods and services from other local businesses in a way the retail giants just don’t. This is why governments at all levels need to focus on policies that support local businesses, from extending the repayment deadline for the Canada Emergency Business Account loan to cutting red tape in local bylaws.”

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