As I was mentioning, with the Canada child benefit, importantly, we've helped to lift about 300,000 children out of poverty.
Consumer confidence is up, Mr. Chair, and this confidence is sustaining a rise in household spending and economic growth. The Canadian economy is now resurgent, with average growth of 3.7% over the last four quarters, making Canada the fastest-growing economy in the G7 countries.
In just two years, over 500,000 jobs have been created, and the youth unemployment rate is near its lowest on record. This growth is underpinning a significant upgrade to Canada's fiscal outlook, which has improved by over $6.5 billion compared with what we were expecting just in March. The federal debt-to-GDP ratio has been placed firmly on a downward track, and Canada continues to have the best fiscal position among G7 countries.
These achievements are more than just numbers on a balance sheet. They mean a better country for ourselves and for our children.
Thanks to Canada's strong fiscal standing, we are able to do what many countries wish they could do: invest in our country and in our future, while retaining the flexibility needed to weather global economic uncertainty.
It proves that as we invest directly in Canadians and their families, we have an immediate positive impact on the economy. The fall economic statement takes important next steps to ensure that Canadians can share in the success we achieve as a country. We're taking action on the understanding that for Canadian families, shouldering the rising costs of raising children can be a real challenge.
Our government proposes to strengthen the Canada child benefit by making annual cost-of-living increases to it starting in July 2018, two years ahead of schedule. For a single parent making $35,000 with two children, a strengthened CCB will contribute $560 in the 2019-20 benefit year towards the cost of raising his or her children. That means more support for purchases of books, skating lessons, warm clothes for winter, or whatever the family needs. By helping parents with the high cost of raising children, the CCB brings added confidence to families. It has proven to have an immediate positive impact on economic growth. Indexing the CCB for the 2018-19 benefit year will provide an additional $5.6 billion in support to Canadian families over the 2018-19 to 2022-23 period.
The help is going to where it's needed most. About 65% of families receiving the maximum Canada child benefit amounts are single parents of whom 90% are single mothers.
For those working hard to join the middle class, and many of those who are living alone, we'll offer even more help with an increase to the working income tax benefit. This increase of $500 million per year is on top of the increase of about $250 million annually, which is already set to come into effect in 2019 as part of the enhancement of the Canada pension plan. It'll give a much-needed boost to over one and a half million low-income workers as they work long hours, sometimes in more than one job, to get a foothold in the workforce and to support themselves and their families.
Our new investments in the working income tax benefit, or WITB, will mean greater support for current recipients by raising maximum benefit levels and expanding the income range of the WITB so that more workers will have access to the benefit.
For many Canadians, a stronger CCB and a more generous working income tax benefit mean more peace of mind when the bills come due. With the fall economic statement, we're also providing direct support to the small businesses that create the jobs that Canadians depend upon.
The balance we have achieved will support strong economic growth by allowing small businesses to put a larger portion of their revenues towards reinvestment and job creation, while ensuring that these benefits are available to more than just the wealthiest Canadians.
We're proposing to lower the small business tax rate to 10% effective January 1, 2018, and to 9% effective January 1, 2019. This means up to $7,500 in federal corporate tax savings per year to help entrepreneurs and innovators to do what they do best.
Our plan for middle-class tax fairness will ensure that incorporated professionals and business owners can continue to have the flexibility to save up for personal reasons, such as parental leave, or for retirement, while ensuring that the measures are focused on a small number of high-income individuals who get the biggest advantage from existing rules.
We'll work with farmers, fishers, and business owners to better accommodate the transfer of a family business to the next generation while protecting the fairness of the tax system.
In everything we do, our government knows that when Canadians are given a real and fair chance at success, they'll make the most of it. The investments we're making point to a brighter future for Canadians. As we look to budget 2018, we'll continue our work to build on the gains we've made over the last two years.
We will make sure that Canadians have access to the skills, training, and learning opportunities they need to compete and prosper in a fast-moving global economy.
We'll drive forward our innovation plan, making big bets in the most competitive sectors of our economy, making Canada a world leader in industries like agrifood, clean tech, and digital. We'll continue investments in our transit, our roads, and in clean water to keep our cities moving and our children safe. We'll continue building a better future for the middle class, those working hard to join it, and those who will follow in their footsteps.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.