Can Canada establish profitable trade links with South American bloc?

Taking a neutral position can give Canada an advantage. But government will have to be pragmatic

Can Canada establish profitable trade links with South American bloc?In November 2018, Canada and Mercosur opened free-trade negotiations. Any such deal represents great potential for Canada – but there are concerns. Mercosur – Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay – is a bloc with a gross domestic product of over $3 trillion and a population of 261 million in 2019. That compares to the GDP of…

COVID-19 has driven governments into debt traps

Printing money to address short-term needs will lead to inflation and dampen any potential economic recovery

COVID-19 has driven governments into debt trapsThe financial consequences of COVID-19 and the shutdown of economies are difficult to evaluate. But some of those consequences have begun to appear and could hinder economic recovery. Inflation is one of these harmful consequences. In the United States, consumer prices jumped 4.2 per cent in the 12 months through to April, up from 2.6…

Why bailing out Air Canada is counterproductive

Rather than subsist on government aid, Air Canada should urge officials to ease travel restrictions

Why bailing out Air Canada is counterproductiveA year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, the only thing keeping Air Canada alive is the federal government bailouts. They’re delaying the inevitable and sensible way out: cutting travel restrictions, encouraging tourism by ensuring effective containment and encouraging vaccination. In April, the government granted the firm another $5.9-billion loan to keep it afloat…

Why Canada’s latest deal with the U.S. creates trade barriers

Canada must be aware that protectionism has returned which makes international trade complicated

Why Canada’s latest deal with the U.S. creates trade barriersCanada faces new pressures on any attempts to ramp up international trade. In 1994, the United States, Mexico and Canada created a free-trade region with the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Considering that the U.S. has been the largest economy in the world from 1994 to now, NAFTA was a true asset for the…

Blowing in a fierce wind: Why crude oil prices are declining

Non-fundamental factors appear to be controlling crude oil market patterns

Blowing in a fierce wind: Why crude oil prices are decliningA number of major events weighed on global oil markets throughout last week. Those factors included: Hurricane Ida; the United States Federal Reserve delaying the tapering off of its economic stimulus; the decision of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies in OPEC+ to stick to their original output increments; the rising…

Delta variant hammering crude oil prices

Asia’s market is softening

Delta variant hammering crude oil pricesThe crude oil rally is stuttering. Having ceded some 15 per cent in prices in recent months, the rally we saw earlier this year has lost steam. Despite talk of growing demand, tightening markets, galloping prices and the call by U.S. President Joe Biden to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and their allies in…

Can we afford $10-a-day childcare?

The simple answer is no

Can we afford $10-a-day childcare?Providing quality care for preschool children is a good thing. Children learn to socialize in groups beyond their family. They acquire the skills and readiness that will allow them to succeed in elementary school and later in life. With children well looked after, all parents are free to take jobs or pursue careers contributing to…

Chinese demand drives world oil markets

Global markets’ overdependence on China backfires as COVID resurgence forces travel restrictions

Chinese demand drives world oil marketsChina has been the sole driver of the global crude oil markets for years. Its growing crude thirst has, time and again, pulled the markets up. Last year, while crude markets were touching the ebb, even going into negative territory, “Chinese buyers dragged oil prices out of the doldrums single-handedly as they stocked up on…

Markets must drive Canada’s energy conversion

Canada’s 2050 goal to achieve net-zero emissions might look good on paper, but it will harm investors, companies, employees and households

Markets must drive Canada’s energy conversionCanada’s policy to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 necessitates divesting from fossil fuels. There’s just one problem: massive outstanding loans from banks to the oil and gas industries. The oil and gas sector makes up more than 10 per cent of the Canadian economy, and abolishing it, gradually or otherwise, would take its toll. Canadian…

Rushing to cash in on oil as global demand drops

Oil producers are facing a structural transformation in the market

Rushing to cash in on oil as global demand dropsThe global crude oil market is undergoing a structural transformation. In its recent Monthly Energy Review, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) pointed out a sharp decline in United States energy intensity – the energy consumption per unit of gross domestic product (GDP). In crude oil terms, the contribution of each unit of energy to…
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