We fail to accurately measure the digital economy’s impact

GDP also ignores work without pay, the underground economy and plenty of other factors that contribute to our well-being

We fail to accurately measure the digital economy’s impactThe ubiquitous use of gross domestic product (GDP), along with its per capita derivative, means we often get away with writing the abbreviation alone. Yet this widespread social proof offers a false sense of accuracy for a fragile measurement overdue for an update. Economists have long been aware of the vulnerabilities to GDP and other…

How cryptocurrency is changing basic economics

For survival, central banks have little choice but to enter the digital-currency race. But it’s a race they will eventually lose

How cryptocurrency is changing basic economicsCentral bankers increasingly sense their obsolescence – and rightly so. The more people turn to private currencies and conduct transactions without intermediaries, the less bureaucrats control the economy. In February 2019, a 33-page Bank of Canada discussion paper unwittingly admitted the vulnerability. The authors, James Chapman and Carolyn Wilkins, noted widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies as…

B.C. won’t be able to quit fossil fuels any time soon

The results of greater energy efficiency will materialize over the long term, even if politicians seek abbreviated timelines

B.C. won’t be able to quit fossil fuels any time soonJock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of B.C. Metro Vancouver residents are rightly upset over paying the highest gasoline prices ever recorded in a North American city. Cost-of-living pressures are already significant for many households in British Columbia, making the recent jump in pump prices particularly hard to stomach. The unprecedented attention being given…

Canada’s trade deal should proceed despite China’s wrongdoings

Trade sanctions are blunt, costly instruments. They should only be used as a last resort

Canada’s trade deal should proceed despite China’s wrongdoingsThe first free-trade agreement between China and Canada appears all but dead, derailed by a diplomatic dispute. Canadian consumers and entrepreneurs will suffer as gains from trade fail to materialize. Despite the gravity of Beijing’s many wrongdoings, trade should still proceed between innocent private parties. The opposite tack – broad impediments to trade, even if…

Millennials can save the future by reinventing money

They need to reinvent the capitalist system to fully unleash that creativity and establish an economy that’s more just and balanced

Millennials can save the future by reinventing moneyIf you dare to ask, young people today will tell you their generation is screwed. Why? Because they were told, “Be creative, get an education and you can be whatever you want to be.” Oops, wrong! Struggle through a creative career and it's almost impossible to buy a home or escape from student-loan hell. In…

Washington Consensus lit the fuse blowing apart the modern world

We’ve allowed market forces to replace a host of political-economic goals and considerations, and we’re far worse for it

Washington Consensus lit the fuse blowing apart the modern worldPax Americana, the long-standing U.S.-inspired post-war world order, is unravelling like a cheap carpet. Apart from catastrophes like Venezuela, Britain's chaotic retreat from the European Union, or the threat from President Donald Trump to pull the United States out of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, there’s the shocking rise of anti-western authoritarian regimes in Iran,…

The tide of global freedom is receding, but there’s hope

Economic freedom liberates people from dependence on the powerful so they can build better lives without fear

The tide of global freedom is receding, but there’s hopeIs the world losing its taste for freedom as we move further into 2019? Two recent reports confirm the perception that freedom is under attack globally. The Human Freedom Index, a joint project of Canada’s Fraser Institute, U.S.-based Cato Institute and Germany’s Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, measures freedom on a zero to 10 scale,…

Central banks’ overreach risks another recession

We need a decentralized, innovative and transparent banking system driven by free-market principals

Central banks’ overreach risks another recessionAs financial markets around the world erupt, dampening the festive spirit of this time of year, plenty of blame has been passed around. There are some notable geopolitical risks in the Middle East, Ukraine, North Korea, Pakistan and elsewhere. There’s the trade war between China and the United States. There are also signs of slowing global…

Trans-Pacific trade deal carries huge potential for Canada

The agreement gives Canada a bargaining chip in dealing with large players outside the pact, such as China and the U.S.

Trans-Pacific trade deal carries huge potential for CanadaThe reworked Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement between Canada and 10 other nations kicks in on Dec. 20. The federal government heartily endorses the deal it rescued after the U.S. administration abandoned it. But it concedes the deal itself may only increase Canadian gross domestic product by an estimated $4.2 billion, or about…

Government debt will worsen the next recession

Governments around the world will go into the next recession with fewer economic management tools at their disposal

Government debt will worsen the next recessionGovernment deficit and debt numbers in Canada are rising due to accounting changes made to better reflect the true nature of government liabilities. Ontario recently revised its deficit and debt projections (based on advice from its auditor general) to better reflect the true costs of pension liabilities and its electricity programs. And because of the…