Palo Alto, Calif. provides a cautionary tale for Vancouver

A typical home in Palo Alto goes for about $2.5 million because of onerous land-use regulations, much like those in Vancouver

Palo Alto, Calif. provides a cautionary tale for VancouverBy Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Palo Alto, California, home to high-tech giants including Facebook and Tesla, made the news recently when planning commissioner Kate Downing resigned and announced her family’s plan to move to another city due to her family’s inability to afford housing in Palo Alto’s red hot market, where…

Don’t blame the oil crash or wildfires for Alberta’s deficit

Poor policy choices deserve much of the blame for Alberta’s economic problems

Don’t blame the oil crash or wildfires for Alberta’s deficitBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute Recent reports have blamed low oil prices and the wildfires in Fort McMurray for Alberta’s $10.9 billion deficit. But while the recent slump in oil prices hurt the province’s bottom line, and the wildfires were costly, Alberta would have been much better positioned to weather the…

Alberta poised to outdo Ontario on budget deficits

The situation could even worsen if the province fails to deliver promised and long-overdue spending discipline in the years ahead

Alberta poised to outdo Ontario on budget deficitsBy Ben Eisen and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute The Alberta government is choosing policies similar to the ones that have dampened economic growth in Ontario for years. A recent analysis from the federal government compared the economic damage done to Ontario’s auto sector during the financial crisis at the end of the 2000s and…

Faulty arguments underlie call for $15 wage

Raising the minimum wage is another example of the Notley government making things worse for the Alberta economy

Faulty arguments underlie call for $15 wageBy Charles Lammam Steve Lafleur and Hugh MacIntyre The Fraser Institute In a recent column in the Edmonton Journal, analysts from the Caledon Institute defended the Notley government’s plan to increase the provincial minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2018. While the column is riddled with factual errors and faulty arguments, the authors got one…

Rule of law under attack in B.C.

By imposing a tax on already signed agreements, B.C. is demonstrating a worrisome indifference to the rule of law

Rule of law under attack in B.C.By Kenneth Green Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Mike de Jong, B.C.’s finance minister, recently and unexpectedly announced an additional property transfer tax of 15 per cent on foreign nationals purchasing residential property in Metro Vancouver. Whatever the merits of this policy, many have overlooked a troubling element of its implementation –…

Alberta squanders its business-friendly reputation

Notley government doesn't realize the path back to prosperity will only be achieved through improving the province’s investment climate

Alberta squanders its business-friendly reputationBy Steve Lafleur and Jason Clemens The Fraser Institute The decline of Alberta’s investment climate is grabbing headlines in both traditional and social media. While the policies responsible for this chill were announced months ago, the realities are starting to set in, with story after story of struggling businesses asking – indeed pleading – with…

Red tape, not foreign buyers, drives housing affordability woes

Heavy-handed policies have consequences that are worse than the problem they seek to fix

Red tape, not foreign buyers, drives housing affordability woesBy Kenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Foreign nationals purchasing homes in Metro Vancouver and the Greater Toronto Area is a topic that continues to make national headlines, especially as housing prices rise. This came to a head recently when B.C. Minister of Finance Mike de Jong announced an additional…

Foreign purchase tax ignores crucial source of housing unaffordability

A tax on foreign buyers may seem like an easy fix but it ignores the fact the housing supply is not keeping up with demand

Foreign purchase tax ignores crucial source of housing unaffordabilityBy Kenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute In response to the fear that foreign homebuyers are driving up Vancouver housing prices, the provincial government has decided to introduce an additional 15 per cent property transfer tax on foreign home buyers in Metro Vancouver. This move diverts attention from the underlying…

It’s official – Alberta’s 2015/16 deficit larger than initially thought

Notley government hiding behind low oil prices to defer making the tough decisions to reduce spending

It’s official – Alberta’s 2015/16 deficit larger than initially thoughtBy Steve Lafleur and Ben Eisen The Fraser Institute There’s no doubt that 2015/16 was a bad year for Alberta’s public finances. And with the recent release of the provincial government’s 2015/16 annual report, we now know just how bad it was. According to the report, the province’s operating deficit for the year was even…

Removing barriers to housing construction crucial to affordability in Calgary

Calgary homes are more expensive now than when oil prices peaked before the 2008 recession

Removing barriers to housing construction crucial to affordability in CalgaryBy Steve Lafleur Josef Filipowicz and Ian Herzog The Fraser Institute Growth in Calgary’s housing market recently slowed alongside oil prices, but today’s snapshot belies the significant increases in housing prices over the past two decades. In fact, Calgary homes (houses, condos, townhouses, etc.) are more expensive now than when oil prices peaked before the…