A growing economy
Initial economic activity in Canada was based around competition between the French and the British for control of the fur trade. The Hudson’s Bay Company, which employed British, French and Aboriginal workers, was dominant in the north-west of North America with outposts at Fort Garry (Winnipeg), Fort Edmonton, Fort Langley (near Vancouver) and Fort Victoria. Many of these trading posts later developed into cities.
Canada’s first financial businesses began to open around the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries; in 1832, the Montreal Stock Exchange opened. For much of its first 200 years, Canada’s economy depended on agriculture and the export of natural resources via her roads and waterways.