Fraser: Infrastructure stimulus spending a waste

Infrastructure projects have very long timelines and by the time shovels hit the ground the recession is usually over and recovery has begun, think tank argues

Fraser: Infrastructure stimulus spending a wasteLooking to discretionary public infrastructure investments as a response to economic downturns may be a poor policy choice, suggests a new study released Wednesday by public policy think-tank the Fraser Institute. The Fiscal Policy and Recessions: The Role of Public Infrastructure Spending report said infrastructure spending is not an effective policy for stimulating the economy…

CEO pay: when they deserve it and when they don’t 

CEO pay has increased over the last decade but the increase is perfectly related to the value of their skills

CEO pay: when they deserve it and when they don’t In debates about inequality, some people – including some economists – claim the salaries and compensation of chief executive officers aren’t linked to performance. Essentially, they don’t really earn their money. This claim, repeated ad nauseam in recent years, is misleading to say the least. As noted in my recent study published by the Fraser…

Business sentiment in the Prairies still weak

The Prairies remain the exception where economic indicators remain weak as energy sector continues to be challenged these days

Business sentiment in the Prairies still weakResults from the winter Business Outlook Survey from the Bank of Canada suggest that business sentiment in the Prairies remains weak while more broadly positive across Canada. “In aggregate, firms’ outlook is supported by expectations of healthy domestic and foreign sales,” according to the survey, released Monday. Key findings of the survey include: Expectations for…

‘Ho hum’ forecast for Canadian economy in 2020

Canadian economic growth 1.7 per cent in 2019 followed by a slight decline of 1.6 per cent growth this year then growth of 1.8 per cent in 2021

‘Ho hum’ forecast for Canadian economy in 2020None of the major trends of 2019 suggest impending economic doom for Canada, but nor do they point to much in terms of upside, says a new report by TD Economics. “In all cases, a ‘ho hum’ economic performance appears to be the best we can hope for . . . Some help will come…

Federal finances on a razor’s edge

The federal government can’t continue to ignore the warning signs of a slowing economy. It should limit discretionary spending now

Federal finances on a razor’s edgeBy Tegan Hill and Jake Fuss The Fraser Institute The recently-released Economic and Fiscal Update demonstrates the federal government’s proclivity for marked increases in deficit-financed spending despite warning signs of a slowing economy. New borrowing and a larger deficit increase the risk to federal finances should a recession occur. The federal update pegs the deficit…

Growing debt a clear and present danger to Canadian economy

Canada’s debt has grown faster than the economy. That dangerous pattern casts a shadow over the nation’s long-term financial health

Growing debt a clear and present danger to Canadian economyBy Alex Whalen and Jake Fuss The Fraser Institute Just before the holidays, the federal government released its fall economic update. It revealed that Canada’s federal debt-to-gross-domestic-product ratio increased in 2019, meaning Canada’s debt has grown faster than the economy. This is particularly important because the government chose the debt-to-GDP ratio to guide federal fiscal…

Wexit would solve the country’s malaise

It's time to break apart this dysfunctional nation so the various parts can repair their generations-long problems

Wexit would solve the country’s malaiseBy Colin Alexander Research associate Frontier Centre for Public Policy Canada’s recent federal election result exposes intractable challenges dating from Confederation in 1867. Wexit could allow Alberta to escape from a burden somewhat resembling the maladministration that afflicted Argentina, once one of the world’s richest countries. For the past half century, Canada has not been…

Canadian economy will stall in 2020

The next two years will probably bring feeble increases in GDP, in line with 2019’s uninspiring performance. Job creation is likely to decelerate

Canadian economy will stall in 2020As the clock winds down on 2019, it’s time to ponder what the coming year may have in store for the Canadian economy. To provide some context, 2019 hasn’t been a great year for the economy, with inflation-adjusted gross domestic product (GDP) expanding by around 1.6 per cent. This was less than growth in both…

Why a Canadian basic income is inevitable

The need for income security among middle-class Canadians is accelerating as the labour market changes

Why a Canadian basic income is inevitableIn Canadian policy circles, basic income has come to mean a stipend paid to families or individuals without the many conditions and rules that govern existing income assistance programs. The amount received is gradually reduced as income from other sources increases. However, basic income is not just about welfare reform. A basic income is most…

Canadian capital markets thrive without national regulator

Centralization undermines bottom-up co-ordination already underway between the provinces and territories

Canadian capital markets thrive without national regulatorAdvocates for centralized financial regulation have met their match in Canada. The nation is proof that competition between intranational jurisdictions can foster diverse, prosperous capital markets. In the research paper, The Federal Takeover of Canada’s Capital Markets, we argue the decades-long push for a national securities regulator is a solution in search of a problem.…