North America

More than a year after the Great Resignation took hold in the United States, Canada is grappling with its own greyer version: The Great Retirement, Reuters reported. Canada's labor force grew in August, but it fell the previous two months and remains smaller than before the summer as tens of thousands of people simply stopped working. Much of this can be chalked up to more Canadians than ever retiring, said Statistics Canada. It is not just the 65-and-over crowd packing up their offices and hanging up their tool belts.
Read more
During the second quarter of 2022, consumer insolvency rose to its highest level since the start of the pandemic, according to Equifax Canada, MPAMag.com reported. Consumer proposals went up by 20.7% annually in Q2, accounting for approximately 76% of all insolvencies in Canada. Delinquency rates in 90 day+ accounts also had a 4% increase, Equifax said.
Read more
Cineworld Group Plc filed for bankruptcy in Texas in an effort to tame its $5 billion debt pile, Bloomberg News reported. The UK-based movie theater chain, which draws most of its revenues from the U.S. after the acquisition of Regal Cinemas in 2018, yesterday filed for chapter 11 protection. Cineworld has commitments for $1.94 billion of bankruptcy financing lined up from existing secured lenders, the company said in a statement. The company’s management and board of directors will remain in control of the business.
Read more
The Bank of Canada delivered a fourth consecutive outsized interest-rate hike in a bid to slow the nation’s economy and drag inflation down from four-decade highs, Bloomberg News reported. Policy makers led by Governor Tiff Macklem raised the benchmark overnight rate by 75 basis points to 3.25% on Wednesday, giving Canada’s central bank the highest policy rate among major advanced economies. Officials said they expect to continue raising rates in coming months.
Read more
The Securities and Exchange Commission is telling American audit firms to be cautious about taking on as new clients Chinese firms that trade in New York, Bloomberg News reported. The warning on Tuesday follows several businesses switching to U.S. auditors amid an ongoing dispute between regulators in Washington and Beijing over access to audit work papers that could lead to about 200 companies being kicked off American stock exchanges.
Read more
The Bank of Canada is widely expected to deliver yet another oversized interest rate hike next week, lifting its policy rate into restrictive territory for the first time in two decades, but bets are split on whether or not a pause will follow, Reuters reported. BoC Governor Tiff Macklem has made clear the central bank is focused on getting "to the top end or slightly above" the neutral rate, the range from 2% to 3% where monetary policy neither stimulates nor weighs on the economy. The neutral range has declined over the last 20 years. That should happen on Sept.
Read more
A unit of Malaysia’s state-owned investment fund 1MDB -- which has spurred investigations around the world into deal-making and political patronage under former Prime Minister Najib Razak -- is seeking bankruptcy protection in the U.S., Bloomberg News reported. Brazen Sky Ltd., which is fully owned by 1Malaysia Development Bhd., filed for chapter 15 in Southern District of Florida court, according to a filing. The document listed voluntary liquidation pending in the British Virgin Islands, where Brazen Sky is incorporated.
Read more
LATAM Airlines yesterday turned back two challenges to its bankruptcy reorganization plan, putting the carrier a step closer to emerging from chapter 11 after seeking protection from creditors in the early months of the pandemic, Reuters reported. LATAM said in a statement it was pleased by a U.S. bankruptcy court's decision confirming its reorganization plan in which two groups of creditors lost their appeals. LATAM, which filed for bankruptcy in 2020, won court approval to exit chapter 11 in June.
Read more
The Bank of Mexico on Wednesday said it is not wed to hiking interest rates in line with the U.S. Federal Reserve and will evaluate all available data to bring down inflation, Reuters reported. There has been much market speculation on whether Banxico, as the Mexican central bank is known, will follow in lockstep with the Fed as it embarks on what has become the sharpest round of U.S. rate hikes since the 1980s.
Read more
The former Mexican airline Interjet has been formally accepted into a domestic bankruptcy process by a district judge. Interjet will now be able to negotiate up to 40 billion pesos in debt (nearly US$2 billion) with its creditors, SimpleFlying.com reported. On Tuesday, a Mexican judge approved the airline Interjet formally entering a bankruptcy process. Interjet ceased operations in December 2020, after a years-long crisis fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read more