Don’t point the finger at Poloz for our languishing loonie
- The currency plunged about a cent after the remarks, dropping to US77¢, as traders took the comments to mean the Bank of Canada was in no hurry to raise interest rates.
- The Bank of Canada isn’t “looking” for reasons to leave borrowing costs low, as Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at CIBC World Markets, said this week.
- Poloz said nothing in his speech at Queen’s University on March 13 that the central bank hadn’t communicated in its latest policy announcement on March 7 and in its “economic progress report,” delivered by Deputy Governor Timothy Lane in Vancouver on March 8.
- Yes, the rate of economic growth was slower in the fourth quarter than the Bank of Canada predicted, but Poloz said this week that revisions show the actual level of output was in line with expectations.
Costco eyes fresh grocery delivery in Canada
- TORONTO — Costco is exploring ways to deliver fresh groceries to consumers in Canada after finding early success with its new online food delivery services in the U.S. Canada’s biggest warehouse retailer, whose grocery market share has increased substantially over the last decade along with Walmart’s, introduced online grocery delivery of non-perishables to U.S. customers last October.
- Same-store sales at Costco Canada in the second quarter ended Feb. 18 were robust, rising 8.7 per cent.
- Walmart Canada, meanwhile, reported Canadian same-store sales 2.9 per-cent in the period ended Jan. 31.
- Ont. Kevin Grier Market Analysis & Consulting Inc. In the U.S., Costco has also made it clear that the move is about convenience for customers, not cost: On the area of its website that details online grocery delivery options, it notes that online prices are generally 15 per cent to 17 per cent above warehouse walk-in prices.
Champagne shows there’s no substitute for hustle when it comes to trade
- On Monday in Ottawa, Champagne, who often refers to himself as Canada’s “chief marketing officer,” launched Investment in Canada, an agency that will attempt to convince global companies to set up their next office or plant on the cooler side of the imaginary line where the 49th parallel dissects North America.
- Well, Champagne is the first trade minister I’ve observed who puts the potentially demeaning business of selling stuff ahead of the haughtier responsibilities that come with the job.
- Rather than sell Canada as the 51st state, Champagne talks about Canada as a market of hundreds of millions of people thanks to free-trade agreements with the U.S. and Mexico, the European Union, and soon the other members of the TPP.
- It’s gimmicky, but at least Champagne recognizes that global trading powerhouses do more than sell lots of stuff to their next door neighbours, and often on discount thanks to a weaker exchange rate.
CPTPP side deals leave door open for Canada to regulate Netflix, experts say
- Side deals under Canada’s newest trade agreement leave the door open for the government to regulate foreign video services such as Netflix Inc., although the current Liberal government has shown little appetite for such measures.
- The side letters also indicate the government wants to maintain cultural exemptions in trade talks, a signal that could have implications for the North American Free Trade Agreement talks, Geist said.
- Many industry players are calling on the federal broadcast regulator to regulate online streaming services.
- The original wording gave Canada wiggle room to regulate as long as it applied the same rules to both domestic and foreign services.
- It’s not clear exactly how or whether the government intends to use the side letters to advance policy, but Minister of Canadian Heritage Mélanie Joly lauded the deal as one that will protect Canadian culture.
Our poor loonie — ‘There’s not a whole lot to love about the currency right now’
- The Canadian dollar fell to its lowest level in eight months on Monday, and the downward trend appears likely to continue until U.S. President Donald Trump decides what he is going to do on trade.
- Since Canada is America’s largest source of imported steel and aluminum, and recent domestic economic data has fallen short of expectations, it should come as little surprise that the announcement hurt the loonie.
- With Canada, China, Brazil, the European Union and others threatening retaliation, markets around the world have sold off on Trump’s threats, as a trade war could put an end to the coordinated global economic growth that has propelled stocks.
- After a rate hike in January, Canadian economic data have softened, suggesting there is little reason for another raise from the central bank.
Frontier markets seek ‘larger slice of pie’ from miners as metal prices surge
- It’s a question that is attracting much reflection from mining executives looking for the next place to explore or build a mine, many of whom now are flush with funds to replenish their project pipeline, as a result of a surge in the price of a variety of metals.
- The result is that as metal prices rise, counter-intuitively, mining companies in emerging economy countries may also see their risk profile increase.
- Don Dudeck, chief executive of Savary Gold, which is exploring in Burkino Faso, said the country recently increased its royalty rate by one per cent, and the government would own 20 per cent of any mine he built.
- Centerra Gold Inc. chief executive Scott Perry told the Financial Post in an interview last week that after running into problems in the Kyrgyz Republic, his company is no longer looking at developing mines in emerging economy countries.
Pulling out of NAFTA ill-advised in response to U.S. steel tariffs: expert
- Canada will take the harshest blows if U.S. President Donald Trump slaps heavy tariffs on foreign imports of steel and aluminum, but any temptation to suspend NAFTA talks in retaliation should be avoided, Canada’s former chief negotiator on the trade agreement said Friday.
- Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has said Canada will “take responsive measures to defend its trade interests and workers.” But trade experts are divided on just how much Canada, as a market of 35 million people, can push back against the U.S. Canada is clearly more dependent on its trade relationship with the U.S. than the other way around, Weekes said.
- Still, there are ways Canada can influence officials south of the border, including by drawing up a “retaliation list” of American exports that Canada would levy in response to the steel tariffs, Weekes said.
‘Trade wars are good, and easy to win’: Trump’s tariff threat sends shock waves around world
- After President Donald Trump said the U.S. plans to impose 25 per cent tariffs on steel imports and 10 per cent on aluminum, the shock waves are being felt around the world.
- While the exact form of the curbs remains unclear — especially whether U.S. allies will win exemptions — the reaction on Friday from outside the world’s biggest economy has been largely negative.
- Donald Trump’s plan to curb U.S. imports of steel on national-security grounds threatens the foundations of the World Trade Organization, warned the European Steel Association.
- European nations are now pitching in too, and Norway’s remarks amplify what may prove to be the Achilles’ Heel of this whole thing — what national-security risks is Trump actually pointing to in trade flows, especially when metal comes from your friends and allies?
- However, some shuttered capacity is high-cost, so it’s unclear how much of an impetus the tariffs will prove to be, Ferraro said.
Federal budget: Ottawa to study merits of ‘open banking,’ a catalyst for fintech
- Ottawa is going to study the merits of introducing “open banking,” which allows consumers’ financial data to be shared between banks and other financial services providers, to see if it should be introduced in Canada.
- It has already been adopted by jurisdictions including the United Kingdom and Australia, and is touted as a catalyst to the development of financial technology, or fintech.
- In Tuesday’s budget, the government said open banking has the potential to increase innovation and competition in the banking sector.
- But it also gives rise to concerns over privacy and data security, so a final decision has not been made.
- At the same time, it has the potential to make it easier for consumers to move and manage their money, and to make informed decisions by providing greater transparency on the products and services offered.
How Canada’s high value resources are blockaded from the inside out
- On a typically drizzly Vancouver day, the Kimon’s Greek captain (I’ll call him Nick) had docked uneventfully and was ready to take on its cargo: nearly 200,000 barrels of oil.
- By the time the oil crisis was over, six months later, the Kimon and sister ships like the Damianos, delivered 1.5 million barrels of oil per-month from Vancouver to Eastern Canada via the Panama Canal.
- Despite the challenges, increasing volumes of Canadian oil and natural gas have found their way to markets over the past century, generating $100 billion of annual revenue and still kicking off cash flow to invest $800 million a week in this current downturn.
- As well, the eastern half of the country is becoming increasingly reliant on higher priced, non-Canadian sources of oil and natural gas.