Author Archives: cdugan

Our Head-In-Ass Phenomenon & Interest Rates

Like many central bankers nowadays Stephen Poloz, Governor of the Bank of Canada, finds himself in a bit of a pickle these days. Like central bankers elsewhere, Poloz is trying to figure out how to bring historically low interest rates to more normal levels without inadvertently triggering another downturn. To walk that line, he must […]

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Global Gluttony Continues

Taking on debt in basic terms simply means stealing from our future income in order to purchase or consume something today. If we do enough of it what will be left of our future income in order to purchase or consume in the future?  Is there not an inevitable wall that will be hit?  Will […]

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Sustainability; just a fancy new word for “common sense”

A few years ago, BC Comfort Air Conditioning, a B.C.-based company with over 45 years experience in mechanical HVAC services, noted employees were leaving the doors wide open in the chilly season for convenience. One simple change—asking workers to keep that bay door closed—helped cut natural gas use by 65%, saving the company $7,000 a […]

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Uuuum…Alberta We Have a Problem….

According to a recent by RBC report focusing on Canada’s Household Debt Albertans would be hardest hit by further interest rate hikes.   Mortgage debt in Alberta rose almost 30 per cent on average from 2010 to 2016. Households in Alberta will feel the most pressure from rising interest rates because residents in the province carry […]

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Canadian Debt Dogpile

Our Federal government recently admitted that they will never eliminate the deficit. In fact, Finance Canada now projects deficits for another 25 years, totaling almost a half-a-trillion-dollars! The fiscal victory being claimed by the federal government however is that the debt will grow ‘slower’ than the economy’ – lowering the debt-to-GDP ratio with program spending […]

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Pending Credit Market Dumpster Fire?

Moody’s Investors Services joined the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) and S&P Global Ratings this month warning that Canada’s banking system, dominated by the Big 5, is facing a growing threat of souring consumer loans amid rising interest rates.  Canada’s ratio of household debt to disposable income reached a record 171 percent in Q3 of […]

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The 1.8 Trillion Dollar Millstone

Canadians’ collective household debt has climbed to $1.8 trillion as the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) sounded an early warning that the country’s banking system is at risk from rising debt levels. China, Canada and Hong Kong are among the economies deemed most at risk of a banking crisis.  Yes, you read that right.  Not […]

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Alberta Economic Outlook 2018

All signs point to growth for Alberta’s economy in 2018 with non-energy sectors poised to perform well, particularly agriculture, agri-foods, tourism and technology. Still, challenges continue, with the unemployment rate stubbornly high and some businesses in the province struggling. Late last month ATB Financial released its first  Alberta Economic Outlook of 2018, providing insight into what […]

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Time almost up at the all-you-can-eat buffet?

Canada’s current debt binge has some sounding the alarm on rate hikes. According to Macquarie Capital the unprecedented rise in consumer debt means the Bank of Canada’s (BoC) rate-hiking cycle is already the most severe in 20 years and further increases will have far graver consequences than conventional analysis shows. Assuming just one further rate […]

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The End of the Canadian Housing Bonanza?

Canadian home sales rose to a record in December just before tougher mortgage rules took effect, helping make 2017 the second strongest market ever. Transactions climbed 4.5 percent from November to 45,976, according to a report in early January by the Canadian Real Estate Association. The national benchmark price index was little changed on the […]

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