North America

The Bank of Canada on Monday reiterated it has no plans to introduce a digital currency for the time being, but said that might change if people began using physical cash less, Reuters reported. The Canadian central bank says it is well into the development process on a cash-like digital currency that it could release to the public, should the need arise. A number of other central banks are doing similar work. "We haven't made a decision to issue one yet because we basically don't see a compelling need under current circumstances," said Bank of Canada Deputy Governor Timothy Lane.
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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's new government is set to impose higher taxes on Canadians, which will help fund some campaign promises but are not broad enough to also start paying down the country's record levels of debt, leaving Canada vulnerable to the next economic crisis, analysts say, Reuters reported. This could be a risky strategy for the country, which piled on new debt at a faster pace than any of its Group of Seven peers during the pandemic.
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Upon learning the U.S. intends to reopen land border crossings in early November to fully vaccinated travelers from Canada and Mexico, Emily Pearce started planning a visit to the nearest Target store, located in upstate New York, the Wall Street Journal reported. The Ottawa resident said for months she has been eyeing a pair of wicker nightstands that the retailer sells. Target doesn’t ship to Canada, and she can’t find anything comparable in Canada at the same price point. Shopping trips, family reunions and vacations are back on the agenda for Canadians like Ms.
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Canada is concerned about the challenges facing global supply chains and is watching the country's ports very closely, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said on Thursday, Reuters reported. Freeland, speaking to reporters in Washington after meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, said she was broadly optimistic about the strength of Canada's economic recovery from COVID-19.
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Canadian business leaders are calling on the federal government to extend COVID-19 benefits for small business and food service operators, saying moving ahead with plans to end the wage and rent subsidies on Oct. 23 will pull the safety net out from under struggling business owners, the Financial Post reported. In a letter shared with Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, the Canada Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) urged the federal government to extend benefits such as the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) to Nov. 20.
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Mexico’s consumer prices are rising at a phenomenal pace and might not peak until the end of 2021 or early 2022, requiring an appropriate response by policy makers, central bank deputy Governor Jonathan Heath said, Bloomberg News reported. Both internal and external supply shocks have led to an upward inflation trend, leaving no room for expansive monetary policy, Heath, one of the five Banco de Mexico board members, said on a Grupo Financiero Banorte podcast released Wednesday.
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Mexico’s president presented details on Monday of a proposal that is likely to squeeze out hundreds of private power generating plants and may provoke complaints under the Mexico-U.S.-Canada free trade accord, the Associated Press reported. The constitutional reform presented by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador would cancel contracts under which 34 private plants sell power into the national grid. The plan declares “illegal” another 239 private plants that sell energy direct to corporate clients in Mexico.
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Grupo Aeromexico SAB sees emerging from Chapter 11 by the end of this year with an exit plan worth about $1.7 billion, Bloomberg News reported. The airline, which filed for bankruptcy protection in June 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic brought travel to a halt, filed a motion late Thursday to extend the period to issue a complete plan to Dec. 9. The step was taken “out of an abundance of caution” as it seeks to resolve pending matters. Aeromexico is “working fervently to resolve outstanding issues,” the airline said a filing to the court, some of which relate to its fleet.
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Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem said the economic recovery is on track despite disappointing output growth, but warned there’s a risk high inflation could prove more persistent than expected, Bloomberg News reported. Gross domestic product suffered a shock contraction in the second quarter, and data since then suggest economic growth in the next three-month period will fall short of the central bank’s forecast for a 7.3% annualized gain.
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Canadian mergers and acquisitions activity for the third quarter hit its highest since 2016 as historically low interest rates and strong equity markets helped companies to revive transactions that were put on hold due to the pandemic, Reuters reported. Dealmaking rose 27.7% to $76.6 billion in the third quarter of the year, but was significantly down from the record $120.3 billion recorded in the first three months of the year, according the Refinitiv data.
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