Canadian merchandise trade deficit balloons to $2.1 billion

Exports fell almost 3% in November, mainly as a result of lower crude oil deliveries

Canadian merchandise trade deficit balloons to $2.1 billionCanada’s merchandise trade deficit with the rest of the world widened from $851 million in October to $2.1 billion in November, according to data released on Tuesday by Statistics Canada. The federal agency said that was due to exports falling by 2.9 per cent in November, mainly on lower crude oil exports, while imports decreased…

Not all cannabis candies are created equal

Health Canada offers a framework for the sale of edible cannabis products before the October 2019 launch. Will we be ready?

Not all cannabis candies are created equalYou think October 2018 was complicated, wait until edible cannabis products are legalized by October 2019. It’s just a matter of time before the edible market represents the majority of the cannabis market in Canada. A study released last year suggested that 93 per cent of consumers supporting Ottawa’s legalization plans would try a cannabis-infused food…

The practical limitations and realities of government

Recognizing those limitations and realities will result in a more effective, focused government that uses taxpayer resources more wisely

The practical limitations and realities of governmentBy Jason Clemens and Niels Veldhuis The Fraser Institute There’s a gap, some might say a chasm, between what advocates for new and expanded government programs imagine government can achieve versus the day-to-day reality of government. Recent Canadian history provides no shortage of examples of ambitious, imaginative initiatives for government. The current federal government, for…

Health-care reform in Canada is coming one way or another

The system's weak performance, rising costs, shifting demographics and a court challenge will all drive change

Health-care reform in Canada is coming one way or anotherBy Jason Clemens and Niels Veldhuis The Fraser Institute There is perhaps no service the government is involved with more personal than health care. When a person or loved one is sick and in need of care, Canada’s failing health system becomes an immediate concern. There’s a general consensus among analysts that Canada is a…

Could Mike Holmes be the saviour of 24 Sussex Drive?

The official home of the prime minister is in utter disrepair. But the price tag to restore it is way too high. Here's a solution

Could Mike Holmes be the saviour of 24 Sussex Drive?$34.5 million. That’s how much the National Capital Commission (NCC) recently said it would cost to repair 24 Sussex Drive, the official residence of the Canadian prime minister since 1951. Hmm, this seems pretty steep. What about tearing down the original Victorian house (built in 1868) and its extension, and building a brand new one?…

Two fiscal statements, a common debt problem

The federal and Ontario governments need to present deficit-reduction plans with a credible target dates now

Two fiscal statements, a common debt problemThe Ontario and federal governments will release their fall fiscal and economic statements this month. Despite a tendency to compartmentalize these separate events, in reality, there’s only one taxpayer. And when the fiscal debt situations of the provincial and federal government are combined, Ontario taxpayers are right to worry. According to the most recent data,…

Trudeau government spending out of control

The federal government's fiscal plan is a dismal failure. Prime Minister Trudeau must repair it before next year’s election

Trudeau government spending out of controlBy Jason Clemens, Jake Fuss and Milagros Palacios The Fraser Institute The next federal election is less than a year away. A lingering issue for the government, in particular Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Minister of Finance Bill Morneau, is their ability to soundly manage the country’s finances. While much of the attention has rightly…

Keep the Bank of Canada out of the digital currency playing field

Central banks – try as they might – can’t create genuine cryptocurrencies and should learn to live with rising competition

Keep the Bank of Canada out of the digital currency playing fieldState digital currencies that attempt to emulate private cryptocurrencies are doomed. Not only will they fail in terms of adoption, despite having the state behind them, they will fail in terms of the objectives that drive alternative currencies. The rise of cryptocurrencies, particularly bitcoin, has caught the attention of central banks and financial regulators. Given…

Municipal governments should do less and spend less

The surest way to trim the bloated costs of municipal services is to privatize them. Competition drives costs down and quality up

Municipal governments should do less and spend lessMunicipal spending in British Columbia is rising far too fast. According to a report from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, the cost of running municipal governments – even after accounting for price inflation and population growth – rose by an average of 28 per cent across the province from 2006 to 2016. The business…

Government debt will worsen the next recession

Governments around the world will go into the next recession with fewer economic management tools at their disposal

Government debt will worsen the next recessionGovernment deficit and debt numbers in Canada are rising due to accounting changes made to better reflect the true nature of government liabilities. Ontario recently revised its deficit and debt projections (based on advice from its auditor general) to better reflect the true costs of pension liabilities and its electricity programs. And because of the…

Canada’s public sector is getting fatter, and that’s bad news

Instead of climbing out of debt, federal and provincial governments are spending more, to the detriment of the economy

Canada’s public sector is getting fatter, and that’s bad newsRecent employment data from Statistics Canada shows a troubling trend. In July, the ratio of private sector to public sector employees (excluding the self-employed) dipped to lows that – except for the period of massive ‘stimulus’ spending by the federal and provincial governments in 2009-10 – have not been seen since Canada’s fiscal crisis of…

Why a Canadian basic income is inevitable

The need for income security among middle-class Canadians is accelerating as the labour market changes

Why a Canadian basic income is inevitableIn Canadian policy circles, basic income has come to mean a stipend paid to families or individuals without the many conditions and rules that govern existing income assistance programs. The amount received is gradually reduced as income from other sources increases. However, basic income is not just about welfare reform. A basic income is most…

Publicly-owned facilities in Canada top 50,000

Municipalities own more than 98% of culture, recreation and sport facilities: StatsCan

Publicly-owned facilities in Canada top 50,000The number of publicly-owned culture, recreation and sports facilities in Canada in 2016 topped 50,000. New data released by Statistics Canada on Tuesday showed that there were 51,136 of these facilities, broken down by 5,400 ice arenas, 4,710 pools, 6,753 multi-purpose, 4,412 arts and culture, and 29,861 other facilities “consisting of sports fields, community centres,…

What every business can learn from Alberta’s failures

Add value, diversify, take control of your destiny, do long-term planning and be fiscally responsible

What every business can learn from Alberta’s failuresIt should come as no surprise to anyone that the failure of the Alberta government over the past 40 years to protect the interest of its citizens has resulted in a province that’s up to its neck in debt. The woes of the province cost the Progressive Conservative Party its reputation, future generations their Heritage…

Trade, deficit reduction and tax reform critical as recession looms

The federal government must act quickly on 3 fronts if it is to head off economic disaster

Trade, deficit reduction and tax reform critical as recession loomsWith the resumption of Parliament, Canada’s policy-makers face a turbulence. The United States and China are waging an economic Cold War armed with tariffs. And Ottawa continues negotiating with the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump over the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), with an American deadline looming on Sept. 30. Alongside all this,…
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