David's Feed
Oct 8, 2013

Canada August trade deficit widens, hitting Q3 growth

OTTAWA, Oct 8 (Reuters) – Canada’s trade deficit widened
more than expected in August as imports soared to a record high,
suggesting that exports were still not providing the
much-desired boost to economic growth in the third quarter.

The trade deficit climbed to C$1.31 billion ($1.27 billion)
as imports grew by 2.1 percent to set a new record and exports
rose by 1.8 percent, Statistics Canada said on Tuesday.

Oct 7, 2013

Canada PM to miss Commonwealth summit, cites Sri Lanka rights

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Monday he would not attend a November summit of the Commonwealth in Sri Lanka because of what he called human rights abuses on the island.

“We remain disturbed by ongoing reports of intimidation and incarceration of political leaders and journalists, harassment of minorities, reported disappearances, and allegations of extra judicial killings,” he said in a statement.

Sep 24, 2013

Fairfax’s BlackBerry deal seeks to forgo Canada takeover review

OTTAWA (Reuters) – The investor that has struck a tentative $4.7 billion deal to take smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd private is aggressively touting his group’s Canadian status to avoid the government reviews of foreign takeovers that have plagued recent attempts to buy Canadian companies.

The $9 a share proposal, from an as-yet unidentified consortium led by Canadian investment guru Prem Watsa’s Fairfax Financial Holdings, was announced on Monday. That was the first working day after BlackBerry shares dived after the company warned of an almost billion-dollar quarterly loss and announced it was laying off more than a third of its workers.

Sep 17, 2013

Jump in Canada factory sales seen boosting growth after dip

OTTAWA, Sept 17 (Reuters) – Canadian manufacturing sales
jumped a much greater-than-expected 1.7 percent in July from
June, a sign the economy is recovering after disruptions caused
by floods in Alberta and a work stoppage in Quebec.

Analysts had predicted sales would rise 0.5 percent from
June. The month-on-month increase was the largest since the 3.5
percent leap in February, Statistics Canada said on Tuesday.

Sep 13, 2013

Canadian household debt-to-income ratio hits record high

OTTAWA, Sept 13 (Reuters) – The ratio of household debt to
income in Canada hit a record high in the second quarter,
although the pace of growth slowed from the same period in 2012,
Statistics Canada said on Friday.

The federal government and the Bank of Canada have expressed
concern that Canadians are taking on too much debt – in
particular cheap mortgages – at a time when interest rates are
at near record lows. Officials fret that when rates go up
eventually, some consumers could find themselves in trouble.

Sep 11, 2013

Fuel on train in Quebec disaster more explosive than labelled

OTTAWA (Reuters) – A runaway train that blew up in a Quebec town, killing 47 people, was hauling a more flammable, gasoline-like fuel than the crude oil it was supposed to be carrying, raising questions about how accurately dangerous goods are identified on North American railroads, Canadian investigators said on Wednesday.

In an update on its probe into the July 6 disaster, Canada’s Transportation Safety Board (TSB) urged U.S. and Canadian regulators to better document the transport of dangerous goods, and said it is also looking at the safety of the rail cars that are used to move oil. The TSB can recommend changes but not impose them.

Sep 11, 2013

Canada crash investigators seek tougher rules on dangerous goods transport

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canadian investigators probing a train disaster that killed 47 people in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, urged U.S. and Canadian regulators on Wednesday to review the processes for transporting or importing dangerous goods to ensure proper documentation.

The Transportation Safety Board (TSB), which does not have the power to impose changes, said in a release that test results showed the crude being transported in tank cars that crashed into Lac-Megantic were not accurately documented and had a lower flash point, explaining in part why it ignited so quickly.

Sep 11, 2013
via FaithWorld

Quebec seeks to ban public workers from wearing religious symbols


(The Quebec government website shows examples of acceptable (L) and unacceptable religious symbols allowed to be worn by public servants, according to its proposed Charter of Quebec Values, September 10, 2013. Credit: Reuters/Quebec Government website)

The Canadian province of Quebec will not allow public servants to wear Muslim headscarves, Jewish skullcaps or other obvious religious symbols under a new charter unveiled on Tuesday that is designed to cement a secular society.

Sep 10, 2013

Quebec seeks to ban officials from wearing religious symbols

By David Ljunggren

(Reuters) – The Canadian province of Quebec won’t let public servants wear Moslem headscarves, Jewish skullcaps or other obvious religious symbols under a new charter unveiled on Tuesday that is designed to cement a secular society.

The pro-independence government of the predominantly French-speaking province says its Charter of Quebec Values will help create a distinct identity for its 7.5 million people.

Sep 9, 2013

Canada cancels payroll tax increase as hiring slows

OTTAWA, Sept 9 (Reuters) – Canadian Finance Minister Jim
Flaherty canceled plans on Monday to increase a payroll tax in
a break for small businesses hurting from lingering economic
uncertainty, but the move is not expected to provide a big lift
to growth or jobs.

The employment insurance (EI) premium paid by both employers
and workers will be frozen at 2013 levels for 2014 and will not
be allowed to surpass that rate in 2015 and 2016, Flaherty said,
instead of rising every year as outlined in the government’s
March budget.

    • About David

      "I have been the National Political Correspondent in Canada for Reuters since 1999, focussing on politics, defence (in particular Canada's role in the Afghan War) and the environment. I won the award for Reuters Treasury scoop in 2009 for my work at the G20 summit. From 1995 to 1999 I worked in London, mainly covering foreign affairs, and from 1989 to 1995 I was stationed in Moscow where I covered the collapse of the Soviet Union and the many conflicts this helped trigger."
      Joined Reuters:
      English, French, Russian
      Treasury scoop of the year 2009
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