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Olivia and Noah most popular baby names in 2020


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Olivia continued a record streak as the most popular baby girl’s name in Alberta in 2020 while Noah remained in the top spot for baby boys.

Alberta families welcomed 49,030 babies in 2020 – 25,160 boys and 23,870 girls. Olivia was the most popular girl’s name for the eighth year in a row, giving it the longest popularity streak for any girl’s name in Alberta since 1980. Noah placed first on the boys’ names list for the second consecutive year.

Other popular names for girls were Emma, Charlotte, Ava and Sophia. Oliver, Liam, Benjamin and William rounded out the top five names for boys.

Alberta remains a province of many cultural and ethnic backgrounds, and many of our youngest members have names reflecting that diversity. Alberta is home to baby girls named Amara, Amaya, Zahra, Zoya, Baani, Danika, Raya, Thalia, Yuna and Chimamanda. Some of Alberta’s youngest boys are named Mateo, Ahmed, Bodhi, Yusuf, Zorawar, Arjun, Gurbaaz, Miguel, Abdul and Idris.

“Last year was difficult for everyone, but every new baby that an Alberta family welcomed brings joy and also hope for the future. Whether parents welcomed their firstborn or a sibling to other children, they can count on the same thing: Alberta is a great place to raise a family and we have a strong future ahead of us.”

Nate Glubish, Minister of Service Alberta

In a year unlike any other, positivity seemed to be a popular theme for some new parents, with names like Hope, Peace, Faith, Charity, Joy, Happy and Brave appearing on the list of registered names.

Some parents also seemed to be inspired by athletes (Kobe, Muhammad-Ali, Beckham), mythology (Artemis, Persephone, Aries, Zeus), music (Dre, Zeppelin, Bowie), video games (Zelda, Link, Eevee), literature (Guinevere, Atticus) and places (Cairo, Nile, Phoenix).

Quick facts

  • Notable changes to the 2020 lists:
    • Isla appeared in the top 10 list for girls for the first time. The name was 12th most popular among girls in 2019.
    • Theodore and Levi appeared in the top 10 list for boys for the first time. The names were 19th and 27th most popular among baby boys in 2019, respectively.
    • Lily increased in popularity among girls’ names, from 24th most popular in 2019 to ninth in 2020.
    • Ethan dropped to 12th place among the most popular boys’ names, after appearing in the top 10 list every year since 2000.
  • Historically, girls’ names that held the No. 1 spot for the longest consecutive time period include:
    • Jessica: six years (1990-1995)
    • Emily: five years (1998-2002)
    • Olivia: eight years (2013-2020)
  • Historically, boys’ names that held the No. 1 spot for the longest consecutive time period include:
    • Matthew: five years (1995-1999)
    • Ethan: nine years (2001-2009)
    • Liam: seven years (2010-2016)
  • The highest birth count recorded in recent history for Alberta was 56,744, recorded in 2015.
  • Parents have up to one year to register their child’s birth. As a result, the list of 2020 baby names and birth statistics may change slightly.

Girls’ names and frequency (top 10)

(In brackets is the number of children with each name)

Place Girl names (2020) Girl names (2019) Girl names (2018) Girl names (2017) Girl names (2016)
1 Olivia (236) Olivia (229) Olivia (235) Olivia (236) Olivia (292)
2 Emma (184) Charlotte (188) Emma (230) Emma (215) Emma (249)
3 Charlotte (161) Sophia (181) Charlotte (175) Charlotte (187) Sophia (215)
4 Ava (159) Emma (178) Emily (164) Ava (184)

Sophia (184)

Ava (207)
5 Sophia (151) Ava (161) Ava (161) Emily (159) Emily (187)
6 Amelia (145) Amelia (159) Abigail (153) Abigail (154) Charlotte (180)
7 Isla (133) Emily (150) Harper (150) Amelia (149) Amelia (172)
8 Emily (127) Abigail (141) Sophia (146) Isabella (141) Abigail (171)
9 Lily (123) Hannah (137) Amelia (145) Aria (129)

Chloe (129)

Chloe (166)
10 Abigail (114) Elizabeth (124) Elizabeth (130) Lily (127) Aria (137)

Boys’ names and frequency (top 10)

(In brackets is the number of children with each name)

Place Boy names (2020) Boy names (2019) Boy names (2018) Boy names (2017) Boy names (2016)
1 Noah (239) Noah (275) Liam (225) Noah (250) Liam (277)
2 Oliver (229) Liam (234) Oliver (212) Liam (244) Benjamin (252)
3 Liam (206) Oliver (225) Noah (199) Benjamin (229) Lucas (247)
4 Benjamin (182) Ethan (213) Ethan (188) Logan (226) Oliver (230)
5 William (178) Jack (198) Logan (182)

Lucas (182)

Lucas (216) Noah (228)
6 Jack (169) William (185) Jacob (181) William (213) William (213)
7 Lucas (163) Lucas (174) William (178) Ethan (192) Ethan (205)
8 Theodore (159) Owen (167) Benjamin (176) Oliver (190) Jack (197)
9 Levi (153) Benjamin (163) Jack (167) Jack (189) Lincoln (192)
10 Owen (152) Jacob (162) Alexander (158)

James (158)

Jacob (178) Owen (189)


Hot rental market makes search ‘stressful’ for many — and it won’t get better soon

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Marissa Giesinger is pictured in Calgary, Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023. On the hunt for a rental home in Calgary over the last six weeks, Giesinger and her boyfriend trawled through listings morning, noon and night, only to find most come along with dozens of applications and a steep price tag. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

By Tara Deschamps in Toronto

On the hunt for a rental home in Calgary over the last six weeks, Marissa Giesinger and her boyfriend trawled through listings morning, noon and night, only to find most come along with dozens of applications and a steep price tag. As an added difficulty, many landlords are unwelcoming to the couple’s brood — dogs Kado and Rosco and a cat named Jester.

“We made the tough decision recently to house our dogs with someone else until we can find a place that’s affordable and we can take both of them,” said Giesinger, a 23-year-old Mount Royal University student.

“It’s definitely been stressful.”

The competitive rental market Giesinger has encountered in Calgary is being seen across the country as multiple factors combine: high interest rates deter buyers and add to rental demand, still-high inflation is squeezing renter budgets, there’s an undersupply of purpose-built rental units and population growth is fuelling demand.

These conditions have left prospective renters feeling even more frustrated than usual by sky-high rents, the frenzy of interest that surrounds any affordable listing and the litany of demands landlords can make when so many people are interested in their home.

Giacomo Ladas, communications director for, calls it “almost a perfect storm” — and it isn’t likely to ease up any time soon.

“What this does is create such a burden on this rental housing market that even though we’re out of the (busy) summer rental season, there’s so much demand that (these conditions are) going to continue like this until the fall and into the winter,” he said.

Data crunched by his organization and research firm shows average asking rents for newly-listed units in Canada increased 1.8 per cent between July and August and 9.6 per cent from a year earlier to reach a record high of $2,117 last month.

Between May and August, asking rents in Canada increased by 5.1 per cent or an average of $103 per month.

When Giesinger rented a two-bedroom basement unit with a roommate a few years ago, the duo paid $1,000 per month, but now she routinely spots “super tiny,” one-bedroom places for $1,350 a month.

“If you want a basement suite or an apartment, you’re looking at minimum $1,200 and that doesn’t include any utilities or anything like that unless it’s a super rare listing,” Giesinger said. data show newly listed one-bedroom properties in Calgary priced at an average $1,728 per month in August, up 21.6 per cent from a year earlier. Two-bedroom homes have climbed 17.4 per cent to $2,150 over the same period.

The picture in Vancouver and Toronto is far bleaker. found the cities had the highest rents in the country.

Newly-listed one-bedroom properties in Vancouver averaged $2,988 in August, up 13.1 per cent from a year earlier, while two-bedroom units hit $3,879, an almost 10 per cent increase year-over-year.

Newly-listed Toronto one-bedroom homes averaged $2,620 in August, up almost 11 per cent from the year before, while two-bedroom properties had a 7.1 per cent rise over the same time frame to $3,413.

It’s numbers like these that have convinced Kanishka Punjabi to abandon her hopes of moving in the near term.

“Two days ago, I gave up on my search because the rental market is that bad,” she said.

The public relations worker has been living in Mississauga, Ont., but felt it was time to find a home in downtown or midtown Toronto, closer to where she works.

However, few of the two-bedroom homes she spotted in her two-month search were within her $2,800 budget.

For example, one apartment she liked at the intersection of Yonge and Eglinton streets had 25 offers in just over a week.

“Some people actually just sent in their offer without looking at the apartment too because there are so many people who are in desperate need of rental units,” said Punjabi. “There’s just not enough.”

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. has projected that the country needs to build 3.5 million additional homes beyond what’s planned before the market reaches some semblance of affordability.

It also calculated that the annual pace of housing starts — when construction begins on a home — edged down one per cent in August to 252,787 units compared with 255,232 in July.

Despite the nudge down, Rishi Sondhi, an economist with TD Bank Group, said it has been a strong year for starts because the industry is responding to elevated prices by building at a robust pace.

But between population growth and rising interest rates, he said, “supply is struggling to keep up with demand” and that’s bound to weigh on renters for quite some time.

“In the short term, it would be unrealistic to expect too much of a reprieve simply because population growth is likely to remain strong through the duration of this year — and that’s really one of the big fundamental drivers,” he said.

“In addition, it’s unlikely to expect affordability in the ownership market to improve too much either because we think the Bank of Canada (key rate) is going to be on hold for the remainder of the year, but there is some risk that they take rates even higher, especially if inflation doesn’t co-operate.”

For renters like Giesinger that message puts even more pressure on her to settle on a place soon.

“Now I’m scrambling to find the money for a deposit and we’re still never really sure like what kind of place we’re going to get,” she said.

“And when you’re battling dozens of other people for a rental it can be super stressful.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 24, 2023.

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UCP asks Albertans to consider an Alberta Pension Plan

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News release from the United Conservative party

The Government of Alberta is starting a public engagement to discuss the possibility of creating an Alberta Pension Plan.
You might be wondering, what’s in it for you? Learn more by watching the short video below:

The government is eager to hear your views. To find more information, and participate in a survey, tap the button below.


Albertans deserve a pension plan that reflects their hard work and earnings, and it is up to Albertans to decide which pension plan that is.
-Your UCP Team



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