The perfect storm

STORM 1 modified modified

Since the goofs at the Bank of Canada lowered the key rate a weensy quarter point in January, the dollar has lost more than 5% of its value. More clobbering on Friday, as it shed another half-cent, and now sits at a quarter above 78 cents US.

Canada imports $524 billion worth of stuff a year, $106 billion of that in consumer goods. The bulk is priced in US dollars. So we’ve only started to see upward pressure on little things we use every day. Like food.

We export $475 billion in goods, of which the biggest component (28%) is oil, at $128 billion. Oil’s tanked more, finishing the week at just under $45 a barrel. Since the price of the stuff we sell has plunged, and the stuff we buy costs more, Canada’s running a big, fat trade deficit.

Now, jobs. The unemployment rate has gone up again. We’ve recently lost 26,000 jobs in the resource sector, 14,000 of them in Alberta. Significant losses in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland, as well. That’s understandable given the collapse in crude values. In fact, most economists say the real storm is yet to come, so we should expect crappy employment stats for months.

But we also lost 19,000 factory jobs last month, the most in four years, largely in Ontario. That’s a surprise, given the fact the decimated loonie was supposed to make our manufactured exports more competitive. You should also know three things about our labour market. First, the fastest-growing category is self-employment. That’s what happens when you lose your salaried position. Second, the youth unemployment rate is shocking, at almost 13.5%. Third, last month governments hired another 24,300 people. Without that bloating of the public service, our job loss would have far exceeded the net 1,000 reported.

Now, go back and read yesterday’s post. Remember the key points?

That’s right. BC’s financial regulator has been warned a housing crash in that province could lead to massive mortgage defaults and blow up the credit unions. House prices and sales are now stagnating, or declining, in 80% of Canada’s markets, despite the fact we have the lowest mortgage rates in recorded history. And, we’ve just hit a new record for debt obesity. Borrowing spurted higher this winter, concurrent with oil dropping and jobs thinning.

Oh yeah, subprime lending is now the fastest-growing segment of the mortgage industry. The number of uninsured home loans has been exploding as average prices in YVR and the GTA top a million and buyers resort to borrowing the downpayment. And the IMF once again pleaded with Ottawa to seriously regulate the whole housing scene, saying properties cost too much and Canadians earn too little.

It sure looks like the perfect storm for real estate. But will most people just ignore the risk, borrow their brains out and be motivated by their house lust?

That’s a rhetorical flourish. Of course they will. And you can be sure no political leader will have the stones to caution them, pointing out that when debt rises but incomes don’t it’s a sure bet families are living beyond their means.

CIBC egghead Avery Shenfeld looked at the jobs numbers Friday and said they are only “the early stages of the headwinds to the economy from weaker oil prices.” But it’s not just oil. The number of people now employed manufacturing stuff is the second-lowest on record. And our unemployed youth (up to age 24) are the best-educated yet among the most under-employed in history.

The doofuses who come to this blog to argue immigrants are to blame for houses they cannot afford, when it’s the crack cocaine of cheap money and the daring greed of lenders that’s kept prices rising, need to stand back and reassess. The vast majority of real estate changing hands in Canada is between Canadians who are willing to immerse themselves in debt to do so. We do this despite the obvious fissures in our economy, blind to the risk we’re taking. Over 70% of us own houses now, but an equal number have no pensions. The savings rate is tumbling and half of us couldn’t go a month without a paycheque.

Worse, we’re using the cheapest rates we’ll ever see to take on more debt, rather than trashing the steaming piles of it we already have.

The anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese meme that bubbles up here every day is even more pathetic than the blog itself. We could bolt the doors tomorrow, trash our rep as a generous people and take the economic hit, but it wouldn’t drop prices in Van or 416. Because foreign buyers did not cause them.

You did. Now it’s time to prepare for the consequences.

We’ll start Sunday.

279 comments ↓

#1 Steve on 03.13.15 at 7:25 pm

For those who blame HAM: Why don’t you blame locals for selling RE?

#2 TurnerNation on 03.13.15 at 7:26 pm

Oil’s well that ends well?

#3 CPG on 03.13.15 at 7:27 pm

Chart of the total credit market debt in the United States versus its gross domestic product over the last 45 years:

http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/?g=13ZC

#4 Hank on 03.13.15 at 7:28 pm

To: #39 Freedom First – from yesterday’s posts:

“Rule 1: look after me. Rule 2: help others.”
——————————————————–

Please, with all due respect, posting regularly on your successes and that your hard-earned prosperity is a direct result of being unencumbered (rule 1), isn’t actually all that helpful to others (rule 2).

Some men like having women, children and furry dependants in their lives (SM and GT come to mind) and that seems to be mirrored in the premise of this blog: to create and maintain cohesion, tolerance, and a functioning society that includes a minimal standard of economic well-being for all Canadians.

I am sorry for the shitty start in life you’ve experienced. That sucks and it’s a really hard thing to overcome. Well done for rising beyond it and creating a good life out of it for yourself; you are an exception to the rule. You should be proud of yourself; it is so very hard to do it alone. I say this with the utmost respect for what you’ve accomplished.

But there comes a time in one’s life when urging others to incorporate survival-style coping tactics arising from powerless and painful childhoods isn’t practical in one’s current reality. You’ve made it, FF. Help others make it with their families intact.

There are winning women and caring men.. but fundamentally: Men are driven to win (testosterone, sports/stocks, Harleys). Women are built to nurture (birth, nesting and Pinterest). How to join and foster these two ideals in our current economic turmoil remains the $640,000** question. And the family home is at the core of it.

** Idiom update to reflect today’s current value.

#5 Scotland on 03.13.15 at 7:29 pm

First

#6 Happy Renting on 03.13.15 at 7:33 pm

Slightly OT, but thank you HD & the other blog dogs who regularly suggest reading “Millionaire Teacher”. Even if you’re not a beginner there’s lots of good stuff in there. I’m going to suggest my better half read it, too.

For those about to flop – if you haven’t gotten to this book yet, definitely put it on your reading list!

#7 eat pie on 03.13.15 at 7:33 pm

DELETED (Vulgarity)

#8 Mister Obvious on 03.13.15 at 7:36 pm

Never has a picture been more appropriate to the blog.

#9 Linda on 03.13.15 at 7:36 pm

Doom & gloom aside this too shall pass. Yes, people have been beyond foolish & have indulged in grasshopper partying rather than diligent ant behavior. Yes, the pain as the party bill comes due will be epic & the diligent ants are going to be asked to foot some of the bill for the partiers. Which they will justly resent doing & not wish to do, but governments will likely loot the ants in order to appease the grasshoppers, all of whom will be saying that it is not fair that they have to bear the cost of their actions alone.

Mistakes were made. Blame will be assigned to everyone but the person who made the decision to spend instead of save, party instead of be prudent. And many promises of better behavior ‘next time’ will be heard.

#10 Scott on 03.13.15 at 7:37 pm

Usually the dog looks a little guilt ridden because he destroyed the furniture, this guy looks like he is happy with the result, can’t wait till Sunday.

#11 Denial on 03.13.15 at 7:37 pm

Garth do you still deny that overseas money is driving Vancouver’s market?

Canadian money drives the market. — Garth

#12 Missing Sestito on 03.13.15 at 7:38 pm

Canadians are truly a financially stupid species of human.

#13 Brydle604 on 03.13.15 at 7:39 pm

Right on Garth!

#14 Bobby on 03.13.15 at 7:40 pm

I’m starting to think about retirement so I read all of those related articles, rather than give them a miss. I have to admit, I’m somewhat surprised at the lack of monies Canadians have put away. Spoke to a realtor and we were talking about just the topic. He said, there was no need to worry, as you people can sell their houses and live off the interest. When I asked about what happens if they don’t sell, pointing at a number of languishing sales, I got that 10,000 mile blank stare. He was lost for words. And I thought, he’s offering real estate advice. Go figure.

#15 Suede on 03.13.15 at 7:41 pm

No way the feds will let the housing economy blow up and revert to whatever the mean is anymore.

Things in YVR for detached are nuts. Makes for great headlines though

Anyone have a chart that shows how many realtors we have in this country? I bet it’s at an all time peak

#16 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.13.15 at 7:43 pm

Ah the old saying “Much wants More”.
has never been truer.
Materialistic,shallow, indebted.
We’re all to blame but some have fallen for it much worse than others.
“Much wants more” or “Fools and their money”.
Ya cant change stupid so why try.
Hunker down people and be the last on your block with beans , buckshot and squirrel.

#17 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.13.15 at 7:44 pm

@#5 Scotland
Once again, Scotland fails at being #1………

#18 nonplused on 03.13.15 at 7:49 pm

Firing on all cylinders today Garth. I guess that means 2 on the Harley.

The debt stats scare me. Everyone who continues to go deeper in debt every year eventually goes bust. Oh well it’s fun for a while.

#19 Smoking Man on 03.13.15 at 7:50 pm

But we also lost 19,000 factory jobs last month, the most in four years, largely in Ontario. That’s a surprise, given the fact the decimated loonie was supposed to make our manufactured exports more competitive.. – Garth.

I’m not surprised, three words sum it up best.

Activist, communist, teacher.. She has scared the living crap out of anyone, who risks money to produce goods.

The highest electric cost in the western world, highest insurance, highest real estate, most expensive airport, most expensive transportation costs. Most scandal ridden, dishonest, and just plain stupid government in the world. What realy scares business, the peasants think she’s great.

If your running a business and creating jobs, you would think the person in charge would care, nope, the priority is insuring that the curriculum is changed to ensure kids learn about tolarance for those that are not, traditional, “not that there is anything wrong with that.”

As I called it along time ago, this would happen..

Teacher has zero concept of how Smoking Men’s Minds work.

She only understands the word funding.

Tax, Tax, Tax, Take, Take Take!!!!!

You ain’t seen nothing yet.

#20 Mark on 03.13.15 at 7:51 pm

The youth unemployment crisis didn’t just begin recently. Its been a nagging problem in the economy pretty much since the early 2000s. The ‘recovery’ out of the 2001-2002 crash saw relatively few young people hired. And now the situation seems even worse. The number of 30-something-year olds who never were able to gain much, if any traction in the job market in Canada and the USA, today, is enormous.

The relatively few youngsters who have been lucky enough over the past decade to find a job in the oil patch are now on the verge of getting a lesson on what its like for the rest of us. Public servants will soon follow. Only a prolonged period of extremely low policy rates, along with government policy to encourage re-industrialization, is likely to have much impact on the economy. Those calling for imminent rate hikes or even questioning the BoC’s recent move to cut, well, the mere suggestion that they erred is lunacy.

#21 None on 03.13.15 at 7:51 pm

Does this change the ~20% allocation of Canadian equity in a well balanced portfolio or is it all unknowable and you should stay the course and rebalance as necessary?

#22 Brian Ripley on 03.13.15 at 7:54 pm

“That’s right. BC’s financial regulator has been warned a housing crash in that province could lead to massive mortgage defaults and blow up the credit unions.” Garth

My TSX Indexes chart (Feb data) does show a growing divergence between real estate and financials much the same as happened in 2007 except that financials now have turned down much earlier (relative to real estate) than the 2007 top:

http://www.chpc.biz/tsx-indexes.html

#23 james on 03.13.15 at 7:55 pm

“The anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese meme that bubbles up here every day is even more pathetic than the blog itself. ”

I agree with this. The flood of immigrants from Hong Kong in the late 80s and early 90s definitely had an impact on prices, but note that it had died down well before the recent run up in prices in 2000 or so.

Foreign buyers are going to have an impact on the market, but the bulk of purchases are local. Take away the foreign buyers, and Canadians would still be using housing as their only investment vehicle.

I think people under-estimate the impact of the housing run-up in the USA. Canada seems to adopt every disaster from the USA five years after Americans realize that it was a bad idea.

#24 souvereigninternational on 03.13.15 at 7:57 pm

To Mark:

You made me think of where the Canadian $ is going.

Here is My loose Macro view of how things going to unfold:

1. Canadian Economy takes a nose dive aided by lower yet eventually volatile oil.

2. Canadian Housing stagnates and eventually heads for Niagara Falls (from Erie)

3. Unemployment goes up. We hit a debt wall. Loans get called.

4.Loonie dives to upper 60’s. Would dive more but US $ is still skyrocketing (It helps keep loonie relevant)

5. Souvereign debt crisis getting bigger and periferies begin to crumble (EMs with their US$ denominated debt, greeks and other PIIGS etc.)

6. US dollar strenght affecting US economy. Rates going down instead of up to bring down the dollar.

7. eventually investors with nowhere to go start piling up into precious metals and commodities creating demand for C$.

8. Loonie goes up on demand created by rush to TSX aided by canadians cutting down on their debt and US manipulation of their on currency down with lower rates.

#25 omg the original on 03.13.15 at 7:58 pm

Significant losses in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland, as well
——————-

I remember somebody a few months ago defending the nosebleed prices in Regina by saying that is where the jobs are.

Opps.

I don’t know – is (was) $600k for a 3 bedroom new construction too much for a little prairie town with zero, zilch, nada land constraints?

#26 Godth on 03.13.15 at 7:59 pm

Too bad it’s not just Canada.
Why The Dollar Is Rising As The Global Monetary Bubble Craters
http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/why-the-dollar-is-rising-as-the-global-monetary-bubble-craters/

#27 HD on 03.13.15 at 8:04 pm

@#6 Happy Renting on 03.13.15 at 7:33 pm

Slightly OT, but thank you HD & the other blog dogs who regularly suggest reading “Millionaire Teacher”. Even if you’re not a beginner there’s lots of good stuff in there. I’m going to suggest my better half read it, too.

For those about to flop – if you haven’t gotten to this book yet, definitely put it on your reading list!

———————————–

You are very welcome.

Glad you took the advice and read it. I read a lot of finance books but “Millionaire Teacher” definitely helped me see the light.

Genuinely happy to have assisted you in any way.

Best,

HD

#28 Joe2.0 on 03.13.15 at 8:06 pm

I don’t blame the Chinese for sheltering money here.
I don’t mind the Chinese or blame them for buying up the British Properties or other parts of Vancouver.
We are a minority population vs a mega population.
More people means more money.
It’s simple math.

#29 Steve French on 03.13.15 at 8:12 pm

Smoking Man:

One of Scorcese’s favourite movies…

“Wake in Fright”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqWvWR8KYFw

#30 Obvious Truth on 03.13.15 at 8:14 pm

#2 Turner Nation. Let it go.

What’s scary today is that mainstream economists are talking about many of the points garth outlined. But I suppose they always follow the trend. And the trend is now apparent. Perfect storm.

Maybe the dogs here can get a government grant to create a trading incubator. With the deficits that we are going to have to run in canada they may as well throw a few bucks in.

Location lillooet. Good value.

Trading Naked. Know anything about grant writing? Maybe garth has a contact.

#31 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.13.15 at 8:14 pm

@#10 missing sestito
“Canadians are truly a financially stupid species of human…….”
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

There are OTHER species of human?

Greekman who doesnt pay taxes before elections hoping the new govt is more irresponsible than the last govt?
Icelandman who joins in with the govt backed banks to invest in American junk bonds and then acts surprised when the entire house of cards collapses?
Spanishman who suffers through 25% unemployment for years and then elects a Socialist govt?
Japanman who invests in infrstructure projects like highways and bridges to villages full of 90 year old farmers and fisherman? While the brownouts occur?

I dare say Canada has no monopoly on stupidity when it comes to politicians or foolish personal finance descisions.
We’re just the flavour of the year.
2015 :Canada’s turn at the Home owneers ass kicking contest

#32 Retired Boomer - WI on 03.13.15 at 8:14 pm

#4 Hank

Ouch! That post was a bit nasty, in my humble opinion.

But, as I picture some overweight dude, parking his mortgaged Harley in front of the local pub, to have a brew while watching the sports du jour on the telly, while complaining he is newly unemployed.

Hope that isn’t you, but the picture your post conjures up is one of a, how do we say it here? A jerk.

Not to worry, even if my mental picture is all wrong, I do feel sorry for the coming shit-storm Canadians are likely to see up close, and personal. Job loss, Bankruptcy, break-ups are going to be REAL things living breathing people will be enduring. Yeah, you’re not so different after all.

#33 Halifax Observer on 03.13.15 at 8:16 pm

This is the most touching real estate video I have ever seen. I now love realtors. Plus, it was very informative.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCxMWpB6qLE

#34 Van Isle Renter on 03.13.15 at 8:25 pm

Manufacturing jobs were exported out of Canada at the same time they were exported out of the U.S.

People who look for manufacturing to float the boat in ON and QC miss the obvious; a lot of those high paying manufacturing jobs were geared up to build equipment for the oilpatch. Ooops!

I guess the premiers of both provinces didn’t get the memo either, as they think that they have a massive rip roarin’ manufacturing industry ready and waiting to pull them out of the ditch. Yeah….. lets go with that.

Oil prices will be down for a while. Overall world demand is down and even though rig counts are plummeting, large numbers of completed and soon to be completed wells are waiting in the wings to be tied in. Ugly has a way to go.

And that’s assuming nothing stupid happens, like a world -wide recession (only the U.S. is standing in the way of that one now) or Vladimir Putin is found to be in a witness protection program using the name of our very own Smoking Man. If either of those happen, all bets are off!

#35 hank on 03.13.15 at 8:27 pm

to: #29 Retired Boomer – WI

Of course, you think it is nasty. You are just like him.

#36 mortgagebrokeron on 03.13.15 at 8:27 pm

who cares if it’s russian, asian, european , american or canadian money buying up the real estate…. You don’t need to own real estate to be a real human. It’s just a place to live.

By the way people who think they own their homes really don’t own a whole lot… The banks and credit unions own your home if you don’t pay them money…

So if foreigners are buying up real estate that means they are bringing money to canada to spend which helps out our economy so we should welcome them with open arms… They buy hydro and pay property taxes so bring them here!!!!

And they hire local contractors to fix and build the house… so why not take their money?????

#37 PunchingTheClock on 03.13.15 at 8:30 pm

The banks have just rolled every highly indebted credit card ownr’s debt’s onto the backs of the CMHC insurance program. The banks are fully protected. Soon the days will arrive again when there are dozens of CMHC owned condo’s hitting the market once the extent of the economic slowdown is known. Hey, there may not even be many employees left at banks and credit unions either. To deliver stellar dividends and keep stock profits up with the looming economic slowdowns across many sectors – they may all or mostly become run from virtual call centers (off-shore of course), with not many branches, people, salaries or benefits to fund as operating costs /overhead that way.

#38 Travis on 03.13.15 at 8:43 pm

The inflation is starting to get a bit out of control, Garth. I just got back from shopping at Costco here in Ottawa. Danby freezer that was $300 in January is now $340. Toilet i bought last year for $95 is now $110. Laminate floors i bought in December 2014 for $1.90 per square foot is now $2.3. Light fixtures i bought in January for $39 are now $45. It’s not looking good.

You use a $95 toilet? — Garth

#39 Babblemaster on 03.13.15 at 8:44 pm

My parents were immigrants. To say that immigrants have not helped to bloat RE in Canada is..well…all I can say is, political correctness, you gotta love it.

#40 linda on 03.13.15 at 8:47 pm

i was under the impression that all deposits to bc credit unions are insured. please confirm if this is not correct as it is important to me & why i deal with the credit union. the link is below regarding the insurance
http://www.cudicbc.ca/

We dealt with this yesterday. Your credit union does not offer federal CDIC insurance. Deposits (but not market investments) are insured under provincial statute only. — Garth

#41 Squirrel meat on 03.13.15 at 8:52 pm

#38 Travis on 03.13.15 at 8:43 pm

The inflation is starting to get a bit out of control, Garth. I just got back from shopping at Costco here in Ottawa. Danby freezer that was $300 in January is now $340. Toilet i bought last year for $95 is now $110. Laminate floors i bought in December 2014 for $1.90 per square foot is now $2.3. Light fixtures i bought in January for $39 are now $45. It’s not looking good.

You use a $95 toilet? — Garth
————————————–
Beats using the new laminate flooring…………

#42 TurnerNation on 03.13.15 at 8:54 pm

Dollarama rama. Earning out soon, too.

Today: “Dollarama added to S&P/TSX Composite Low Volatility Index”

#43 Balmuto on 03.13.15 at 9:00 pm

Eventually this trend will reverse but right now there’s a nice hedge effect to US equity holdings as the USD tends to strengthen on down market days. S&P 500 down today but up in C$ terms. This is happening a lot. On up market days you don’t see much of a correlation with the currency. Diversification benefits on display here.

#44 Clearwater79 on 03.13.15 at 9:02 pm

I have 500 resumes on my desk for 1 job with lots of good ones to chose from. 6 months ago I had 20 and they wher all crap. Funny that 80% are new imigrants with no canadian job experience. Nothing wrong with immigrants as I would love to move to austria and work and enjoy the great skiiing but we 300k new imigrants a year seems a bit unbalanced. Update on calgary job market is beyond frighting right now but wait till july hits and Albertas economic whoes will bring down the whole country For years to come. Sad for all. No one is to blame, it is what it is.

#45 tundra pete on 03.13.15 at 9:05 pm

#38 nice. Plumbers love $95 toilets. You will soon finance your plumbers mcmansion on service calls from that crapper!

#46 Alberta is AWESOME on 03.13.15 at 9:09 pm

YYC giving to YYZ 5-1 barely into second period

Man do the leafs sucks.. spectacular.. no cowboy fire in the belly.

#47 aL Pacino on 03.13.15 at 9:12 pm

DELETED (Ad Hominem)

#48 Squirrel Meat on 03.13.15 at 9:17 pm

Zero assets and he wants to buy a condo in TO.. but first he wants to switch to a lower paying job.!!!

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/personal-finance/mortgages/pension-contributions-are-key-for-young-professional-in-high-tax-bracket/article23461309/

#49 Obvious Truth on 03.13.15 at 9:17 pm

Chumlee from pawn stars is now a trader. This goes anymore mainstream and the bull run might be near the end. They’re in Vegas. Should be thinking slots not stocks.

I bet in 05 everyone in town was buying homes.

#50 Bottom Feeder on 03.13.15 at 9:18 pm

The 3.79% 10 year mortgage is now gone. Replacing it is the 3.84% version. The bottom is in. We are on our way up!

#51 Squirrel Meat on 03.13.15 at 9:25 pm

#38 Travis on 03.13.15 at 8:43 pm

The inflation is starting to get a bit out of control, Garth. I just got back from shopping at Costco here in Ottawa. Danby freezer that was $300 in January is now $340. Toilet i bought last year for $95 is now $110. Laminate floors i bought in December 2014 for $1.90 per square foot is now $2.3. Light fixtures i bought in January for $39 are now $45. It’s not looking good.

You use a $95 toilet? — Garth

—————————————–
They now have smart toilets for $1200…. I’d go with the $95 model too.

http://www.costco.ca/Ove-Smart-Toilet.product.100030829.html

#52 not 1st on 03.13.15 at 9:26 pm

Our credit unions are rocks, especially the Ukrainian ones

#53 Washed Up Lawyer on 03.13.15 at 9:28 pm

With the rout in oil prices, hence lowered energy costs, and the lower dollar, we quickly switched to the optimistic mantra of improved fortunes for the Ontario manufacturing sector.

It seems to me that hoping that something that took place in the past will return is not a strong strategy. If it were we could invest in wooden masts from New Brunswick for ships, beaver felt hats to be sold in the UK and cod.

Are there some leading edge startups in Ontario that are betting on a future manufactured product (not iPhone apps) instead of stamping out engine blocks?

Mr. Inglis was a visionary. Hence my laundry, dirtied in Alberta, was always done in an appliance built in Ontario. Not any longer.

Absent some visionary and innovative entrepreneurs, I ask the same question Merle Haggard asked “Are the good times really over for good?”

#54 H on 03.13.15 at 9:29 pm

I was my understanding some folks were saying the oil sector does not have much of an effect on Employment.

I recall reading “its a small percentage”.

Well, someone forgot to count:

Steel Mills
High Tech Manufacturing
Professional Services
Engineering
Service industry

Industries effected from reduced spending from above like:
Auto Sector
High Ticket items
Durable Goods

List goes on and this just touches the surface.

Not to worry though. Even though there are plenty ill informed articles out about how this will last long and the oil industry can just “turn on” which makes this closed loop.

Fact is the industry absolutely cant. And when the production cuts kick in, we will all see man size inflation starting at the pump.

Remember, in 2009, OPEC shut off 4 million barrels. There still was glut. This time few shut off with the exception on shale and offshore rigs. Both of these are NOT “fire it up”.

Educate yourself on this one. You will be surprised.

#55 BlackDog on 03.13.15 at 9:31 pm

At the risk of being called a ‘doomer’, I wonder what others think regarding the UK’s application to join China in the anti-dollar alliance.

Apparently the big announcement was made yesterday, From BBC News today: “The UK is the first big Western economy to apply for membership of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-31864877

It has zero to do with any anti-dollar alliance. — Garth

#56 Squirrel Meat on 03.13.15 at 9:34 pm

#38 Travis on 03.13.15 at 8:43 pm

The inflation is starting to get a bit out of control, Garth. I just got back from shopping at Costco here in Ottawa. Danby freezer that was $300 in January is now $340. Toilet i bought last year for $95 is now $110. Laminate floors i bought in December 2014 for $1.90 per square foot is now $2.3. Light fixtures i bought in January for $39 are now $45. It’s not looking good.

You use a $95 toilet? — Garth
———————————
Luxury TP has seen good growth for decade…. he knows where to spend wisely. Talk about 1st world priorities!

http://business.financialpost.com/2015/03/13/what-the-rise-in-luxury-toilet-paper-says-about-the-u-s-economy/

#57 Neta on 03.13.15 at 9:35 pm

In the otherwise balanced market, even 5-7% of steady HAM driven demand is well enough to tip the scale. Just keep in mind that HAM buyers are not splitting hairs over $500. They have no problem paying over asking. It creates certain expectations among sellers, the upward trend that keep re-enforcing itself. I remember the story of one Chinese student, a couple of years ago, who bought a beater bung in North York for 1.3 mil in the bidding war while sitting in RE agent’s car and talking on the phone to her parents in China for the entire duration of the “auction”. Guess what, all these red dots on the map of North York, the price tags attached to them perfectly represent the sellers expectation that someone will have no problem paying $850K for their 50 year old bang. And loosing a bunch of bidding wars will drive our native buyers to the conclusion that it is different here….

#58 Rexx Rock on 03.13.15 at 9:35 pm

In many cities in the USA you can buy a newer duplex for $150,000.Live one side and rent the other and almost live for free.No wonder Canadians are so envious of the American way of life
Our Canadian government policies have created a nation of house poor citizens.To top it off they devalue our currency to make everything we purchase more expensive so we keep borrowing to keep afloat.I guess you can call it an act of tyranny.Financial terrorism.

#59 rawdiswar on 03.13.15 at 9:41 pm

Can’t say I’ve met anyone my age (30), who understands any of the risk that comes with home ownership(bank servitude). Most didn’t even realize how little goes to paying down principal in the first portion of their mortgage, so they are just now realizing how little equity they have. Almost no one I have talked to even knows what an amortization table looks like. No concept of due diligence. Pure emotion.

#60 Victor V on 03.13.15 at 9:48 pm

http://business.financialpost.com/2015/03/13/the-world-must-prepare-for-its-dollar-binge-punishment-and-it-wont-be-pretty/

The message from a string of Fed governors in recent days is that rate rises cannot be put off much longer, the Atlanta Fed’s own Dennis Lockhart among them. “All meetings from June onwards should be on the table,” he said. The most recent Fed minutes cited worries that the flood of capital into the U.S. on the back of the stronger dollar is holding down long-term borrowing rates and effectively loosening US monetary policy. This makes Fed tightening even more urgent, implying a “higher path” for coming rate rises.

Nobody should count on a reprieve from the Fed this time. The world must take its punishment.

#61 R on 03.13.15 at 9:49 pm

Who in public sector hiring

#62 Cyclist on 03.13.15 at 9:53 pm

Woohoo! Friday night on the GF blog!!

#63 Lady in Red on 03.13.15 at 9:54 pm

“…one-third of buyers in Vancouver had some connection to mainland China.”

http://www.theprovince.com/business/Real+estate+exec+Chinese+money+There+huge+stake+local+people+keeping+this+thing+going/10858619/story.html

Add me to your club of “doofuses” if you wish, but I will disagree with your point of view on this forever (as will the vast majority of folks here in the lower mainland). Now don’t bother saying something mean to me in reply, I already know what you think of us ;)

The conclusion you quote is from a ‘report’ done by a real estate marketing firm hoping to mess with your head. It worked. — Garth

#64 John on 03.13.15 at 9:55 pm

I think the dog is smiling cause he knows where Putin is. The shredded upholstery is a decoy move.

#65 takla on 03.13.15 at 9:56 pm

re Suede#”No way the fed will let the housing economy blow up”
read your history …the 83′-84 Canadian recession decimated many of my peers who had bought their first homes a yr or two previous to this engineered calamity.Many had to take second jobs and still ended up loseing their homes when interest rates shot up to 20% when there amortized morgages were up for renewal.
I worked for a few builders in Coquitlam building homes on spec that lost everything when the interest rates spiked ,housing prices crumbled ,unemployment swept thru B.C . You could taste the fear in the air when folks watched their homes suddenly unsaleable and their morgages double/triple.
And you think the Fed will care this time….

#66 John on 03.13.15 at 9:58 pm

Or, Putin took the picture. Told the dog to smile or else, after Putin shredded the upholstery. Heh, it’s Friday, gotta think outside the box. On Sunday we’re all creamed. Toss ’em a ham bone.

#67 Victor V on 03.13.15 at 9:59 pm

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/top-business-stories/this-mornings-jobs-report-could-spell-trouble-amid-oil-rout/article23443756/

Indeed, the Canadian Real Estate Association warned today that the rout is playing out in the housing market.

“The further decline in oil prices since CREA’s last forecast has shaken consumer confidence in the Prairies, pushing potential homebuyers to the sidelines and prompting more homeowners to put their home on the market,” it said.

“This has led to a rapid shift in market balance in Alberta, and to a lesser extent, Saskatchewan. Annual sales in these provinces are expected to come in well below elevated levels posted last year, with small declines in average residential prices in 2015.”

The realtors group now projects Alberta will see home sales plunge by more than 19 per cent, and in Saskatchewan by 11 per cent.

#68 John on 03.13.15 at 10:03 pm

Heh, it’s Friday the 13th. Turner must be rocking Port Dover………er…. maybe not. Sumpin starts on Sunday.

#69 Trading Naked on 03.13.15 at 10:20 pm

#30 Obvious Truth on 03.13.15 at 8:14 pm

I’m barely 3 years removed from EI, so I might actually qualify for an entrepreneurship training grant…which I would have taken a long time ago if caregiver-like duties didn’t come up…

#70 gut check on 03.13.15 at 10:21 pm

okay, how’s this for a total newb question:

Can I make a virtually risk free $250/month from $100,000 anywhere? that’d help me right now. Sad, I know.

#71 Trading Naked on 03.13.15 at 10:21 pm

These eggheads at the Financial Crisis Observatory in Switzerland see bubble, bubble, toil and trouble in global fixed income and in Europe. Not so much in the US. I’m not holding them up as any kind of authority; they’re just an interesting academic read: http://www.er.ethz.ch/fco/FCO_Cockpit_March1st_2015.pdf

#72 Waterloo Resident on 03.13.15 at 10:23 pm

All of this talk about job losses is getting depressing.
Lets listen to some NICE AND POSITIVE NEWS about massive job creation going on.

Listen to this video at 30 minutes 40 seconds into the video (Documentary on China’s Wealth, Growth) and you will be amazed. This is what the video says at 30:40 ; (“To keep up even with its modest population growth, China needs to create 15 MILLION NEW JOBS EACH YEAR.”) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMlr0A2kriM

Wow. How come Canada cannot do something that China seems to be doing so easily?

#73 Keith in Calgary on 03.13.15 at 10:24 pm

Back in the early 80’s when rates were 20% the gubmint had a program where if you qualified they cut you monthly cheques between your rate and their perception of what rates should be at to help you service your mortgage. I was a banker here in YYC at the time and remember it we’ll.

Funny thing is, we also actually did genuinely sound credit assessment back then and CMHC was not Mr. Bubble either.

I have no memory of such a program. Link? — Garth

#74 John on 03.13.15 at 10:24 pm

I’ve figured it out. The dog is smiling after shredding the upholstery because he/she is trying to break into the home ‘staging’ business! He/she figures, Canadian chumps will buy any horror show, so go with the meme!!

er…. maybe he/she just got annoyed ’cause the Leafs keep losing and had to get rid of a few pent up thingies.

#75 Fuzzy Camel on 03.13.15 at 10:25 pm

Smoking Man,

Wynne and her social justice communist buddies are running low on revenue. I fully expect a Man-tax, tax males only, for equality of course. She will come up with all sorts of clever taxes shortly. If you are male in Ontario, get ready for the most oppressive 4 years you’ve seen yet. They will make all men out to be rapist women hating oppressors. When the economy tanks this fall, she will blame the patriarchal male system as the problem.

Oh the things she is going to say and do. This whole thinjg is going to go into meltdown by october. She will loot bank accounts, steal property, anything to keep her communist teachers living in their perfect bubble.

As a business man, I am selling off now, getting ready for this to blow up in everyones face. Immigrants are here for a better life. Wynne is here to steal as much as she can for her commie pals. Immigrants will get a whiff of Wynnes stench and hit the exits. Immigrants aren’t dumb, and with Wynne she will tax until every business is bankrupt. Immigrants will halt coming here, then flee!

Oh the racists will get their dream! No more immigrants, we will look like Greece. I wonder if Wynne will form the national socialist feminist party?

Ontario is not a place to invest. We have criminal development charges, millions to pay just for the privilege of building on your own land. How the beep does that make sense???

Not to mention OHIP sucking us dry. Nope. We are milk cows now, soon to be beef cattle.

#76 Bottoms_Up on 03.13.15 at 10:27 pm

We still have to remember the basic tenant underlying price, that of supply and demand.

In both Toronto and Vancouver, demand for housing is high. In Toronto this is supported by immigration (population of GTA grows by 1,000,000 per decade).

“The Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is projected to be the fastest growing region of the province, with its population increasing by almost 3.0 million, or 45.8 per cent, to reach over 9.4 million by 2041. The GTA’s share of provincial population is projected to rise from 47.6 per cent in 2013 to 52.9 per cent in 2041.”

http://www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/economy/demographics/projections/

And there is high demand for Vancouver….many people across Canada discuss moving there in retirement.

#77 Andrew Woburn on 03.13.15 at 10:30 pm

#230 Poutchli on 03.13.15 at 1:53 pm
BNN says a report from a US firm shorting some of our companies, says that immigration has been responsible for propping up house prices, that the oil price drops cause a immigration to go down, and therefore house prices to loose their support. My words.
========================

I’m never quite sure how to take the immigrant story. On the one hand annual immigration appears pretty level so the year to year impact should be about flat and already “baked” into current price levels.

Most immigrants seem to move to major urban areas so they could boost urban prices relative to other areas but as most Canadians already live in these areas, the relative impact may not be much. I am also not sure why recent immigrants are any more likely to buy houses than longer term residents.

What am I missing?

#78 S. Bby on 03.13.15 at 10:32 pm

My cousin who works in the Ft Mac oil patch was on days off in Kelowna and got THE CALL… you are laid off and don’t come back. At least he was not marooned up there by his employer.

#79 Peter on 03.13.15 at 10:35 pm

I wish I heard more people discussing why wages have stagnated for the last decade, or more, here in Canada. Has the government ever mentioned why this is the case?

#80 Retired Boomer - WI on 03.13.15 at 10:38 pm

It always amazes me. It has never been about “how much you make.” It has always been about your family’s ability to live on it.
That means saving (long term) at least 10% of it. As your earnings situation improves you need to save a bit more of it. Sorry gang, saving 10% of the “average salary” is not going to make a great retirement – 15% is where you need to be.
You can’t “DO” it on your salary? Ba,ha,ha,ha!! I’ve seen families who are debt free earning well below the average salaries. What might they know, that you don’t?

Food for thought, huh?

#81 4 AM Sunrise on 03.13.15 at 10:40 pm

#72 Waterloo Resident on 03.13.15 at 10:23 pm

Answer: existing large population + population density.

My parents used to joke that you could set up a peanut stand on a random street corner in China and still make a living. In Canada, if you pick the wrong corner, you’d be lucky to get 20 passersby (of which 15 will be allergic to peanuts and 3 will be too cheap/poor to buy from you).

And maybe all that manufacturing going on (as exploitative and polluting some of it is) may have something to do with it, too.

They’re actively recruiting management types for the new Disneyland in Shanghai aka expat city.

#82 S. Bby on 03.13.15 at 10:42 pm

It’s Surrey eh?
or…
Ride your Harley in the mall.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2-bxutbIPI

#83 wallflower on 03.13.15 at 10:43 pm

How is this not happening in Canada

http://wolfstreet.com/2015/03/12/thatll-kill-the-high-end-housing-bubble-in-us-trophy-cities/

#84 Bottoms_Up on 03.13.15 at 10:45 pm

#59 rawdiswar on 03.13.15 at 9:41 pm
————————————————
Well, life is risky in general. Did you hear of that poor Calgarian woman killed by a whale down in Mexico?

Anywho, yes amortization tables suck up front (as well as the high cost of housing). After buying 2 years ago, we’re in it for $75,000 (includes downpayment), yet after tacking CMHC fees back onto the mortgage, only have equity of about $40,000 (which could easily be wiped out in a market correction).

#85 Godth on 03.13.15 at 10:45 pm

The conclusion you quote is from a ‘report’ done by a real estate marketing firm hoping to mess with your head. It worked. — Garth

Are they messing with our eyes and ears too? Personally I don’t give a lick if the lower mainland (Van.) becomes a Chinese – Indian outpost, could not care less. Please stop asking us to disbelieve the immediate experience of our senses though, it’s insulting. In the long run it doesn’t really matter; remember the Japanese, where are they now? Of course it’s a case of whitey trying to keep up with the delusional trends but the trends are real enough that a feed back loop has formed into a complete delusion. I find it all rather pathetic but who cares what I think. I like the immigrant influx though, regardless of the cost – my cracker culture needs an update. I prefer hanging out with immigrants rather than the small minded rednecks I’m surrounded by, at least they have a story to tell and some culture beyond chopping wood, drawing water and cars, cars, cars. The kids integrate pretty quick regardless; we’re all dominated by corporate culture anyway so why worry about it. We’ll all be phone drones soon enough.

#86 The perfect storm | Realties.ca on 03.13.15 at 10:45 pm

[…] Source: http://www.greaterfool.ca/2015/03/13/the-perfect-storm/ […]

#87 hahaha- read this on 03.13.15 at 10:54 pm

Canadian immigrants? or Canadian Citizens….

can you provide stats to support your views Garth… I bet in many GTA places the properties were purchased by non-Canadian-citizens

let make the distinction clear once for all. ECONOMICS 1-2-3.

10 BILLION on the small planet – 10 million coming to Canada in next 10 years, settling in GTA 5 million – you tell me this does not affect prices…. when we only built a fraction of that, Ontario stopped giving easy land to developers back in 2005….

DO THE MATH AND tell the truth

I want to see % of properties purchased by Canadian-citizens vs non-citizens (at the time of the purchase) per CITY in whole GTA

then we can decide for ourselves what impacts prices.

#88 BS on 03.13.15 at 10:58 pm

63:

“…one-third of buyers in Vancouver had some connection to mainland China.”

That vague statement tells you everything you need to know. It tells you HAM is a real estate industry created marketing myth. What exactly does “some connection to mainland China” mean? It could mean the person has a cousin in mainland China or even the person is of Chinese decent and immigrated 30 years ago from mainland China. Both would have a “connection to mainland China”. If they had data that it was actually buyers and money coming from mainland China buying houses they would reveal it and not come up with some bogus vague statement that contains “some connection”. Heck 30% of Vancouver’s population has some connection to mainland China so it would seem normal 30% of sales are connected. Are people really this gullible?

#89 BlackDog on 03.13.15 at 11:02 pm

re: #55: Apparently the big announcement was made yesterday, From BBC News today: “The UK is the first big Western economy to apply for membership of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-31864877

It has zero to do with any anti-dollar alliance. — Garth

——————————————————————-
I guess I better stop reading Sovereign Man. Everyone has an agenda, and not necessarily giving good advice. Right Garth?

http://www.sovereignman.com/finance/et-tu-britain-united-kingdom-to-join-china-in-the-anti-dollar-alliance-16482/

#90 Reality check on 03.13.15 at 11:02 pm

I’m so tired of hearing that ham aka foreigners didn’t contribute much to housing prices in van & area …do u really think drug dealers & $ laundering is going to broadcast it PLEASE! I lived next to a major drug dealer ( no I did’t know until the swat team swarmed the neighbourhood ) it turns out he bought a lot of houses and grow ops …. Also other nationalities are well known to buy property stealthy so …. I know this for a fact !

#91 Nov54 on 03.13.15 at 11:03 pm

Wages haven’t kept up with house prices and 70% of us don’t have pensions.
Sounds about the same percentage that’s been walking around with conservative hands up our asses telling us to crush unions for the last couple decades. How’s that working for y’all. Talk about drinking cool aid.
Oh,and….Hey Smoker..you remind me of all those morons down south with no teeth who wouldn’t vote for Obama ” because “he wants to force health care down our throats ” That and the colour of his skin.

#92 Mukadi on 03.13.15 at 11:05 pm

24,300 people employed by the government before the elections. That’s called buying votes. It’s time for regime change in Ottawa… There are competent people out there that can better handle the economy, or at least make the coming landing “soft”.

#93 Reality check on 03.13.15 at 11:06 pm

Ps… They don’t care how much it costs… They just need to unload it… They found bags of mouldy cash buried on his property …yes it was on the news big time …

#94 Scully on 03.13.15 at 11:07 pm

Way to go Garth! Since the last interest rate drop Canadians – yes Canadians are going nuts! It’s full of emotion, not much rationality, and definitely makes me think our IQ is closely correlated with interest rates. I am also convinced most want to believe the whole foreign ownership meme because to think otherwise might make ones blood run cold.

#95 veej on 03.13.15 at 11:09 pm

Garth – if Canada is losing so many jobs why do we have 650,000 temporary foreign workers? All of whom once in Canada no one has any idea where they are or what they are doing.

#96 Oil Is Sticky on 03.13.15 at 11:21 pm

“Third, last month governments hired another 24,300 people. Without that bloating of the public service, our job loss would have far exceeded the net 1,000 reported.”

Let’s see…..let’s hire 24K people who need to be paid for with tax dollars that do not exist. And govt’s worldwide wonder why they are so universally hated…….

#97 Keith in Calgary on 03.13.15 at 11:24 pm

Garth……..

It was a provincial initiative and qualifying was not as simple as the “Ralphbucks” rebate from the last decade.

The paperwork was onerous and it only hung around for a year or two if I remember correctly. The level of hardship required was not met by many…….typical of many programs that are political in nature…..no ?

#98 juno on 03.13.15 at 11:29 pm

The only one to blame is the Government.

1) Freakin allowing low interest rates, borrowers which has absolutely no money to buy a house
2) No regulation to the real estate (crea) fraud that is going on.
3) No oversite on the way the real estate brokers conduct their advertisement. If they were stock brokers they would be thrown in jail
4) Lack of Data, which they can easily generate, It may not be precise, but is probably pretty close
5) juicing up the banks, record profits because they have absolutely no risk when lending to high risk people. CMHC was for the poor what business do they have to buy million dollar houses. The restriction should be to the annual poor income. Which should be only about 200,000 to 250,000. Not a million

So what it comes to is the Banks want to lend infinite amount of dollars because they have no risk so they advertise like crazy, you can’t lose, lookie there everyone is making money, get in the game

Crea wants to sell to make money so they lubricate the market just like the banks, and it goes on and on.

Get rid of government support, the banks will clean out their aggressive lending and will only lend to responsibile people. “And the market will balance itself”

#99 nonplused on 03.13.15 at 11:30 pm

Oh and I forgot to say, $45 oil is worse than it sounds. Those are Brent or WTI prices. It’s a long way from Fort Saskatchewan to Cushing, and Enbridge does’t cut anyone a deal. Netback in Alberta right now is probably $25-$35 a barrel for light sweet. That is way below cost and this thing is going to blow soon (economically speaking).

Some people seem to get it like our recently appointed premier, but it seems to me not very many other people do. Here is what happens. If it cost you $80 to produce something you can only sell for $35, you very quickly go broke (unless you can make up the difference on volume – joke!)

#100 45north on 03.13.15 at 11:31 pm

Now it’s time to prepare for the consequences.

I was afraid you were going to say that

Smoking Man: But we also lost 19,000 factory jobs last month, the most in four years, largely in Ontario.

my neighbours voted for Wynne. Some of them are teachers. I don’t think she can cut government spending, it’s just not her nature. Obviously when interest rates rise, the percentage of taxes needed to pay the interest on Ontario’s debt has to rise.

Godth: from your link: China is the most monumental credit and construction Ponzi in human history.

as the US raises interest rates, there will be a monumental inflow of wealth into the US.

takla: I worked for a few builders in Coquitlam building homes on spec that lost everything when the interest rates spiked ,housing prices crumbled ,unemployment swept thru B.C . You could taste the fear in the air when folks watched their homes suddenly unsaleable and their mortgages double/triple.
And you think the Fed will care this time….

you must mean the Canadian Federal Government. Well it will care but it will still raise rates to follow the US. I doubt if the US Federal Reserve will care about speculative builders in a foreign country.

#101 Keith in Calgary on 03.13.15 at 11:32 pm

Garth…….

It was a provincial initiative that in principle sounded nice to the electorate, but it practice the onerous level of paperwork and high entry barrier to prove hardship didn’t benefit many. It was around for a year or two only.

#102 Syd Cixel on 03.13.15 at 11:33 pm

#26 Godth
I didn’t think much of David Stockman away back in the early 1980s when he was Reagan’s budget chief. However, my opinion of him improved drastically after I began reading http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/

#103 tundra pete on 03.13.15 at 11:33 pm

#63 lady in bed.
Schooled by the fearless leader of a pathetic blog. Sweet.

Please leave me your email as I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you.

Please respond quickly before you are priced out.

#104 experienced.optimist on 03.13.15 at 11:45 pm

RE: 73 Keith in Calgary on 03.13.15 at 10:24 pm

Back in the early 80’s when rates were 20% the gubmint had a program where if you qualified they cut you monthly cheques between your rate and their perception of what rates should be at to help you service your mortgage. I was a banker here in YYC at the time and remember it we’ll.

Funny thing is, we also actually did genuinely sound credit assessment back then and CMHC was not Mr. Bubble either.

I have no memory of such a program. Link? — Garth

I do remember some sort of program of this sort in Saskatchewan also. In the late 80’s and early 90’s mortgages here had some sort of subsidy until rates normalized. I looked through my old documents, but other than seeing what the rates were at the time I have no documents on the subsidy. If memory serves me correctly this subsidy had helped build the huge deficits the provincial government ran up at the time. I believe my bank rate in 1990 was about 14% and was subsidized down to around 10% or so. There is some scratching on the file folder of 6.9% but that was later into the 1990’s.

#105 veej on 03.13.15 at 11:51 pm

DELETED (Ad hominem)

#106 Washed Up Lawyer on 03.13.15 at 11:55 pm

Calgary:

Howl at the moon. Shoot out the light.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9GDh7FoH_g

#107 Smoking Man on 03.13.15 at 11:59 pm

#91 Nov54 on 03.13.15 at 11:03 pm
Wages haven’t kept up with house prices and 70% of us don’t have pensions.
Sounds about the same percentage that’s been walking around with conservative hands up our asses telling us to crush unions for the last couple decades. How’s that working for y’all. Talk about drinking cool aid.
Oh,and….Hey Smoker..you remind me of all those morons down south with no teeth who wouldn’t vote for Obama ” because “he wants to force health care down our throats ” That and the colour of his skin.
……..

You’re sort of right, I’m about to lose a tooth. Happens to smokers.

I’m curious… Are you a

Fema Nazi

A dude who speaks in a high Octave tone, who works at Starbucks.

Or a good old fashion communist.

Why do your kind have such problems with dudes who like to wear Fedoras, Drink, smoke, who are not so refind. But live every day like it’s there last.

The epic rule braker, you know, the one your teachers made an example of.. The audience, the afraid.

Normally I would not elevate your status, by me actuly commenting on a comment.

The fact that I acknowledged you got you in the big leagues…

Your turn, I’m board.

#108 No Canada, No on 03.14.15 at 12:00 am

Glad that I moved to US East coast recently.

Plenty of jobs (I work in IT), my net salary increased 2x. Yeah, I know its hard to believe, but holding a weekly check in hands right now. It’s exactly 2x of what I was getting in Toronto while working at exactly the same job. This is even without tax optimization, the staffing firm I’m working with is withholding all taxes automatically.

The company I’m working for is looking to hire five more engineers. But they can’t get them, because smart people are not wandering around looking for “a job”

This is East Coast. Climate? It’s been +12 +15 last few days.

Houses? 350k is something like 4br, 3bar 3000sq ft on 1 acre in suburbs, within 35-40 min of commute from door to door. 300k is really nice condo (1000 sq ft, exposed bricks etc) or a townhouse, all within 10 min walk to the center. I don’t want to tell canadians what you can get here for 1 mln (and you won’t get a million jumbo mortgage for sure).

Museums? Cultural life? Torontonians can only dream about something like what’s available here. And everything is extremely affordable, most tickets are 2x of what you’d pay in Toronto (and NHL games probably 5x cheaper). Not enough local museums, shows and concerts? NY is 2 hours on the train, DC – 2.5h car drive. Flights are also cheap, 150-500 for most of the cities in US.

What else? Small pleasures like 25-30$ dinner for one including drinks (or exteremelly widespread policy of BYOB); happy hours when drinks are half in price; no “sorry” every minute; much less government bs like paying for parking in residential areas. All business are extremely service and client oriented and do “whatever it takes”. I mean they work here literally like fucking robots.

Few words about the service. Canadian service suck big time. Why? Because laziness and million dollar craphouses. Here a teller would be be glad to see your face, like he’s 5 years on deserted island and be jumping over the counter to cash your check at 8 pm on Friday. They literally scared me first few times with this attitude. Constantly in the building, parking, stores and everywhere: sir, please, glad to see you, good morning, good night. Where was the last time you’ve heard somebody greeted you at the building entrance in this first class world city Toronto?! Or took your coat in the restaurant? Or parked your car in the garage?

Ah, and the girls thing. They are hot, too. Actually – they are not only hot, they are much, much more forthcoming and pleasing.

No, seriously. What Canada can offer, except famous idiocy with one million trash “houses” and also queues in the hospitals that are supposed to be “free”?

#109 Yitzhak Rabin on 03.14.15 at 12:02 am

Not much to argue with there. It is worth pointing out though that every currency in the world is currently falling against the USD post the temporary end of QE. The Canadian dollar no exception, but most currencies are falling further and faster, hardly a sign of calm ahead.

If the FED really is hell-bent on raising rates, you will see complete currency turmoil in all other countries, perhaps it is being priced-in now. Foreign central banks will be forced to hike rates aggressively and fast (ie. Russia and Brazil).

It’s doubtful that the FED will have the guts to do this. Expect a token 0.25% rate hike at best, followed by a quick reversal of course and a comback of even bigger QE.

#110 Fort Mac Flatlander on 03.14.15 at 12:11 am

Good evening Garth and fellow blog dogs,

When is it appropriate to catch a falling knife. I’m thinking about starting to toss out offers up here in the great white north with all of the blood in the streets. What is a good entry point? 10% below last spring’s peak? 15%? 20%?

I know there is no such thing as job security these days, but it would require major plant closures to put mine on the block. Any help is appreciated.

Fort Mac Flatlander

#111 wes coast on 03.14.15 at 12:29 am

Garth, is it possible to get stats on Canadian citizens source of income and how much comes from off shore? We have many foreign born Canadian citizens who are just as Canadian as anyone else – but – if they immigrated with large streams of foreign money (and the volume of these scenarios are high enough in YVR and GTA) that could explain what people are experiencing on the ground. Considering we are a diverse population in Burnaby, it is odd to have highrises full of foreign born Asian Canadians over paying for real estate. Over paying by Canadian income standards. But is their income much higher because it is foreign source? Is that something you would be willing to look in to? Either way, I agree that racism is not the answer. All Canadians are equal and if they are bringing foreign streams of money in, there is a financial benefit. Sadly, it seems the diversity that makes Canada so special is eroding as a result (at least in the short term)

#112 Leo Trollstoy on 03.14.15 at 12:30 am

#24 souvereigninternational on 03.13.15 at 7:57 pm
Here is My loose Macro view of how things going to unfold:

Fantastic fiction. Enjoyed reading!

#113 Andrew Woburn on 03.14.15 at 1:13 am

#89 BlackDog on 03.13.15 at 11:02 pm
re: #55: Apparently the big announcement was made yesterday, From BBC News today: “The UK is the first big Western economy to apply for membership of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).”
=====================

Why would you think that an economy which consists mainly of contract manufacturing for first world electronic companies and of building unoccupied apartment buildings and shopping malls can challenge the dollar? China has debts equal to 225% of what might or might not be its actual GDP. Its legal system is questionable and there are almost daily riots against the communist party. Its wealthier citizens are pulling cash out as fast as they can, its population is aging quickly and its economic policies make Mao’s “Great Leap Forward” look rational.

We went through all this in the Sixties when ambitious young people were advised to learn Russian because the incredible growth of the Soviet system was our major challenge of the 20th century. Until it wasn’t.

#114 goodone on 03.14.15 at 1:19 am

Well said today garth. Canadians have done this to themselves. We reap what we sow. This is what a decade of irresponsible conservative governance does.

#115 devore on 03.14.15 at 1:31 am

#87 hahaha- read this

10 BILLION on the small planet – 10 million coming to Canada in next 10 years, settling in GTA 5 million

There are not 10 million coming to Canada in the next 10 years. Annual immigration is around 300k, on a good year.

#116 ILoveCharts on 03.14.15 at 1:32 am

“The anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese meme that bubbles up here every day is even more pathetic than the blog itself.”

To be absolutely clear, there is a difference between being “anti-immigrant or anti-Chinese” and believing that foreign money drives up real estate prices.

There is no blame, emotion or feelings in my assertion that foreign money has an impact on real estate prices. It’s just a fact.

#117 Ponzif on 03.14.15 at 2:17 am

#53
Absent some visionary and innovative entrepreneurs, I ask the same question Merle Haggard asked “Are the good times really over for good?”
——————–
Reminds me of Eric Burton and the Animals:
“Do bad all the good times have been wasted having good times”

#118 Ponzif on 03.14.15 at 2:30 am

#96
memory haze is lifting.
Here’s Eric Burton and the Animals again:
“When I think about the good times being wasted, having good times”

#119 DisgustMadeMePost on 03.14.15 at 3:05 am

Wow. Call me naive. I had no idea this was such big business.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-03-11/passport-king-christian-kalin-helps-nations-sell-citizenship

Christian Kalin’s business is showing poor countries they have at least one resource worth selling: citizenship…….

…Then another piece fell into place. Canada started to close its investor immigration window. Since the 1990s, the country had been offering residency to wealthy people in exchange for an interest-free loan worth about $650,000. When the program was shuttered outright in early 2014, there were 75,000 unprocessed applications, an enormous opportunity for every other country trying to lure investors.

#120 TRT on 03.14.15 at 4:08 am

Doofus here.

So that $54 Million dollar mansion in Vancouver was bought by a local?

And the average price of a detached in Vanciuver approaching $2 Million is bought by locals with 95% financing amounting to monthly payments of $9000. All on an average family income of 76 K?

Doofus it is then.

#121 Mountain Man on 03.14.15 at 4:09 am

Poloz needs to up the rate by .5 % ASAP. This will increase the value of the C$, flush out the real estate speculators and send a signal to overdebted Canadians to reduce their debt.

In the meantime, banks (and their shareholders) will reap the rewards of high credit card debt, huge mortgages and car loans. If interest rates rise, banks will reap the rewards as more people borrow more on their credit card at 18% interest. Banks always win. A large percentage of their mortgages are covered by the CMHC. If the homeowner defaults, the banks takes all the equity and finds another debt-serf to bear the burden. If banks get into trouble, the government will change policy to bail them out. Banks always win.

#122 Freedom First on 03.14.15 at 4:19 am

Time for another update of my ear to the ground report on what is going on in Alberta. Keep in mind everything I have reported about before the msm was writing about anything has proved to be true.

The treatment of workers who still have jobs is also deteriorating rapidly. Workplaces are becoming cesspools of misery in so many antagonizing ways I can’t even report all of the injustices taking place.

There is a reason the oldtimers always advise on having what they call FU money socked away. The evils of debt are going to come front and center real fast to people who so easily signed away their freedom. It is what Garth was trying to save people from. I am glad some listened. I have been trying in my own small way too.

#123 Freedom First on 03.14.15 at 5:09 am

#4 Hank

You should try reading all of my posts, not just one taken out of context. I have lived an abundant lifestyle few get to enjoy. All rewards of my having placed my freedom first from the beginning. It is what people miss from what Garth teaches. Discipline, patience and knowledge are badly needed to orchestrate financial freedom and time looks after the exponential rewards of sane financial management. A survival lifestyle is one built on debt, is extremely high risk and has recently destroyed the economies of the families of the worker bees world wide. Fact. Consider yourself fortunate. I rarely reply to Boneheads.

#124 Hamish42 on 03.14.15 at 5:46 am

We have reached the inflection point for the MSM coverage of the Canadian housing market. On the same day (3/13) Gary Marr at NP posts two articles one of which is the usual “everything is awesome” mls report but the other actually mentions Teranet data and talks of a pull back in RE prices.

#125 davikk on 03.14.15 at 6:55 am

Chart: Canadian new home prices saw the first monthly drop in years

http://investmentwatchblog.com/chart-canadian-new-home-prices-saw-the-first-monthly-drop-in-years/

#126 Mak the investor on 03.14.15 at 7:03 am

Bank of Canada tried to help everybody by reducing the value of their debt in Jan by reducing the interest rates. The hope was that we would stop indulging in the debt orgy and focus on starting businesses to boost the economy.
We responded by partying harder by taking more debt.
So guess who is the stupid?
Thank BOC for trying.
I will be waiting out the Perfect Storm in my rented house hoping that there is not too much blood on the streets.
Wishing good luck to everyone to face the storm.

#127 neo on 03.14.15 at 7:26 am

The real fireworks in the oil sector is going to occur sometime in July when the US reaches its oil storage capacity domestically. The second half of this year is going to be ugly in this country on multiple fronts and our citizens our citizens for the most part are ignorant if it.

#128 maxx on 03.14.15 at 7:35 am

#3 CPG on 03.13.15 at 7:27 pm

Chart of the total credit market debt in the United States versus its gross domestic product over the last 45 years:

http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/?g=13ZC

Shocking. Hadn’t expected such a dramatic contrast. Guessing Canada has even more of a differential.

People have truly lost it- Canada is now truly the global pinnacle of the quick-buck culture via re.

All chequered-flagged by the BOC.

I want to avoid buying re because of the taxation, fee and energy horror show that is now inevitable. Just look at Ontario.

#129 NoName on 03.14.15 at 7:47 am

#56 Squirrel Meat

guys like this ( https://youtu.be/zvGP7ZQ3ixo ) are a reason why so called rise in luxury toilet paper is happening. you cant buy cheep stuph any more preppers are hording it.

I think that there is potential here to make some money. If I remember well in 2013 Venezuela almost managed to run out of the toilet paper. Venezulian gov. vas scrambling to buy some 50mil rolls for its 28mil citizens…
( http://finance.yahoo.com/news/venezuela-toilet-paper-shortage-dont-194109981.html )

#you can’t make this stuff up…

#130 Nov 54 on 03.14.15 at 7:58 am

Hey Smoker…Here’s the thing,back in the 70’s there was always one guy who adopted the persona of whoever was on TV at the moment. Steve Martin, Cheech and Chong etc. damn guy would never let it go, was boring as shit to be around. Glory days eh smoke? Always in trouble with the teachers. Betcha ya skipped detention too. What a badass. Did ya catch heck a lot?
Anyways, back to the space man thingy you got going on/won’t let go of…Mork died.
Me…I started drinking in grade 8. We had lots of fun but found it best to stay under the radar.

#131 Leo Trollstoy on 03.14.15 at 8:26 am

There is no blame, emotion or feelings in my assertion that foreign money has an impact on real estate prices. It’s just a fact.

A ‘fact’ with no credible data source.

A ‘fact’ that can only be supported by anecdotal and circumstantial ‘evidence’.

#132 DUI_on_Money_Road on 03.14.15 at 8:31 am

Instead of ‘FIRST’, let’s see if someone can get a ‘PI’ post time stamp this morning.

March 14, 2015 at 9:26am (3.1415926)

#133 The real Kip on 03.14.15 at 8:47 am

The reason the BoC did not lower rates another quarter point is because it’s too soon. Artificial or not, the Canadian economy will be humming along by October in time for the federal election.

Expect a further 0.25% cut in July or so even if it trashes the economy.

#134 Cookie on 03.14.15 at 9:00 am

20,000 jobs lost in Canadian manufacturing.

I guess manufacturing isn’t yet profiting from the lower dollar.

#135 The American on 03.14.15 at 9:02 am

At #108: No, Canada No, by the name of my handle, I am sure you can see I am partial. I couldn’t have said it better myself. Oh, the ignorance of some never ceases to amaze me.

#136 Mister Obvious on 03.14.15 at 9:28 am

#113 goodone

“Canadians have done this to themselves. We reap what we sow. This is what a decade of irresponsible conservative governance does.”
——————–

I agree. In a grand democracy like Canada I think it’s safe to say we get the government we deserve.

#137 Darryl on 03.14.15 at 9:51 am

#92 Mukadi on 03.13.15 at 11:05 pm
24,300 people employed by the government before the elections. That’s called buying votes. It’s time for regime change in Ottawa… There are competent people out there that can better handle the economy, or at least make the coming landing “soft”.
———————————————————-
I think it’s called Tax season. Probably mostly Seasonal CRA workers.

#138 Bytor the Snow Dog on 03.14.15 at 10:08 am

@ Mister Obvious

We don’t have a democracy. We have first past the post.

#139 Willy2 on 03.14.15 at 10:28 am

– One reason canadian prices are rising is the drought in California. That state is a MAJOR Agricultural producer and exports to the rest of the US & Canada.
– On top of that, a rising USD/CAD pushes foodprices even higher.
– But contrary to common belief that INFLATION will increase DEFLATIONARY pressures. Higher prices makes it more difficult to service one’s debts. And that’s an additional DEFLATIONARY force. And decreasing employment is an additional DEFLATIONARY force.

#140 NoName on 03.14.15 at 10:42 am

@107 sm

The fact that I acknowledged you got you in the big leagues…

If you just could see now, envy and jealousy is eating me alive.

#141 4 AM Sunrise on 03.14.15 at 11:09 am

#110 wes coast on 03.14.15 at 12:29 am

Reading this reminds me that my parents were considered HAM back in the 70’s. They were in their late 20’s, but looked younger, and got the stinkeye from the neighbours who were jealous of these couple of “kids” who bought one of the larger houses on the block. They had the same “regular” jobs in the old country as regular Canadians, but they scrimped and saved for that down payment (no early inheritance). Their realtor was impressed with how frugal they were compared to the locals.

Stinkeye aside, most locals went out of their way to make them feel welcome. That realtor gave them a big cheese wheel when the deal closed. They’d never had cheese before.

The world’s changed since then, of course.

I wish I had even anecdotal stats on how many of those multiple wire transfers of just under $50,000 were used to prepare bank drafts for real estate, but my memory of my days as [email protected] doesn’t go back that far.

The client base of my branch was maybe 30% new immigrants from mainland China, or less, so I’d see those multiple $49,000 wires maybe once a week or less.

There was ONE juicy story of a realtor who took out a mid six-figure HELOC to front real estate purchases by his (offshore?) clients. His HELOC was always in good standing because he brought in money (somehow? wire transfer?) to cover right afterwards. It was way too fishy for the bank, so of course they shut him down.

There’s no way one unscrupulous realtor and a bunch of dirty money (local and foreign) pumped up the YVR market. Like a lot of people said here, it’s a combination of HAM and CMHC and hysteria. Maybe CMHC-enabled hysteria accounts for 70% of the price action?

#142 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 11:19 am

Nosty

Where is Putin? Kremlin tells media to stay put this weekend.

Big trucks and equipment at Kremlin…

Big announcement coming, could it be, Full Disclosure…

Im drawing blanks from the UCC

#143 Drill Baby Drill on 03.14.15 at 11:28 am

Dear Pathetic Blog ; there was a subsidy program in the early eighties to combat ultra high mortgage rates. My wife and I received a couple of thousand bucks to put towards a down payment on a home. The housing industry was taking such a hard hit the government was providing funds for first time buyers in order to jolt life into the industry. Circa 1983, Alberta, 20% interest rates, low house values.

#144 Squirrel meat on 03.14.15 at 11:34 am

#128 NoName on 03.14.15 at 7:47 am

#56 Squirrel Meat

guys like this ( https://youtu.be/zvGP7ZQ3ixo ) are a reason why so called rise in luxury toilet paper is happening. you cant buy cheep stuph any more preppers are hording it.

I think that there is potential here to make some money. If I remember well in 2013 Venezuela almost managed to run out of the toilet paper. Venezulian gov. vas scrambling to buy some 50mil rolls for its 28mil citizens…
( http://finance.yahoo.com/news/venezuela-toilet-paper-shortage-dont-194109981.html )

#you can’t make this stuff up…
—————————————————-

That’s hilarious.

#145 Nagraj on 03.14.15 at 11:41 am

Garth’s “The Perfect Storm” is a grim picture of Canada’s future – and absolutely correct. The unemployment rate will continue to rise.

I don’t have the foggiest idea of what would improve the picture.

I find the argument about the future course of Canadian interest rates fascinating: one side will be HORRIFIED when rates move.

Blame: an awfully long list. [Forners (sic) are always and everywhere a choice target. Brings to mind “The Jewish Question” in Deutschland in the 1930’s, more recently the rise of “Golden Dawn” in Greece, and the rising popularity of The National Front” in France.]

#146 LP on 03.14.15 at 11:49 am

#4 Hank on 03.13.15 at 7:28 pm

There are winning women and caring men.. but fundamentally: Men are driven to win (testosterone, sports/stocks, Harleys). Women are built to nurture (birth, nesting and Pinterest).

***************
Dang…and you were doing so well to that point!

#147 Retired Boomer - WI on 03.14.15 at 11:49 am

Looking forward to Sunday…

Garth-

An overview (from an American Viewpoint) on Canada.

Your present leadership Mr. Harper learned his ways in the oil of Alberta (Imperial Oil). He persuaded a large bet on bitumen oil, which is ‘dirty’ to extract & refine. Oh well we will need it. At the right price for crudes, this product can be profitable. Presently it is not.

Canada has always appeared to me a more, or less one product -commodity- country. Be it timber, Hydro, Cod, and now the big bet on tar sands oil. Five proposed pipelines to deliver this bitumen to market, none yet approved. Without, do we have stranded assets in a boreal forest hundreds of miles from the nearest refinery, and even more to the nearest port?

Respectfully submitted-

#148 Kris on 03.14.15 at 11:57 am

You did. Now it’s time to prepare for the consequences.
We’ll start Sunday.
———————————

We’ll start what on Sunday? Translation, anyone?

#149 Retired Boomer - WI on 03.14.15 at 12:00 pm

Hon. Garth T-

Five items that countries around the world are dealing with presently, and one peculiar to the U.S.

1. Debt
2. Deficit
3. Demographics
4. Deleveraging
5. Deflation

6. US Dollar (raising rates here should create an even stronger buck)?

Countries are facing these issues, how are the people within them to react?

#150 Retired Boomer - WI on 03.14.15 at 12:01 pm

I’ll shut-up now.

#151 Kam on 03.14.15 at 12:02 pm

1. We need to bring back mandatory retirement rules (retirement age 62 years) so that youngsters can get some decent jobs. Number of oldies are sticking to their jobs in the Public sector. Most of the time 60+ workers go for sick leaves and employer has to employee temp staff to do their work. Instead of saving money government is spending more and at the same time creating under employment for the educated youth.

2. We need to abolish Temp Foreign Worker Program so that locals can get decent jobs.
New skilled immigrants are not getting entry level jobs because Employers are hiring contractor (big outsourcing companies) and they bring cheap workers under Temp Foreign Worker Program.
Chinese – to work as labours
Indians – IT jobs at Manulife , RBC etc
Phillipinos – nannies, restaurant jobs

3. We need to control human trafficking in Canada. Number of people immigrate as refugees and claim all the benefits while they do cash jobs.They do not pay any taxes but they use all public (incl health for 5 kids and 2 old age parents) services . Most of the time refugees pay $10k to $25k to agents who bring them to Canada in Ships. I remember last to last year approx. 1500 cabbies declared “zero income” in their tax returns.
4. Minority Politics is going to kill Canada. Government should not try to appease minorities. There should be “Opportunities for all & Appeasement of none”.

#152 jess on 03.14.15 at 12:16 pm

Earnings and Incomes of Canadians Over the Past Quarter Century, 2006 Census: Findings
http://www12.statcan.ca/census-recensement/2006/as-sa/97-563/index-eng.cfm?CFID=130092&CFTOKEN=85429211

Earnings and Incomes of Canadians Over the Past Quarter Century, 2006 Census: Earnings

Little change in earnings during the past quarter century
http://www12.statcan.ca/census-recensement/2006/as-sa/97-563/p4-eng.cfm

=
Will these numbers go up?

Insolvency Statistics in Canada—Fourth Quarter of 2014
https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/bsf-osb.nsf/eng/h_br03343.html#tbl1

Annual Consumer Insolvency Rates by Province and Economic Region
2010–2013
https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/bsf-osb.nsf/eng/br01820.html

#153 4 AM Sunrise on 03.14.15 at 12:35 pm

#122 Freedom First on 03.14.15 at 5:09 am

I suddenly remembered that my parents always preached “freedom” to me. They indirectly taught me the 80/20 rule – that life should be 80% frugal/boring and 20% extravagant. “Freedom” means always having cash handy for that 20%.

My mom is big on the freedom thing. Her definition of freedom is shoving me out of bed on Christmas morning and saying, “pack your bags, we’re flying to Vegas in two hours!” It means travelling abroad in 2009 and not sweating the exchange rate even when the CAD was at rock bottom. My dad’s not big on travelling. She thinks he’s weird for not wanting to exercise his freedom to travel just because.

People tell me that I lead an abundant life. Some of that is thanks to my financial decisions. Some of that is because I find joy in getting up off the couch to do off the wall things…that have nothing to with money.

There are many definitions of abundance/freedom and many ways of achieving it. Your path is but one of many. My parents sure were tied down by a job, a house (paid off in 10 years – not unusual in those days), joint accounts, kids, and rescue dogs. But they are financially free.

#154 Nov54 on 03.14.15 at 12:40 pm

Hey S’Mork’n Man…Good to see ya let go of the space man schtick since I became your mentor. Nice serious post there.
Here’s how it will play out. In defiance, you’ll probably write another spacey one. ButWait! Don’t hit Submit. Read it out loud. You’ll see the lameness of it all. Then choose. I assure you that if you delete,it won’t mean your my bitch, it’ll just feel that way for a while.
Oh, and you get to keep the fedora, I’m sure you look quite fetching in it. I feel the same way about my hockey helmet.

#155 Chris scott on 03.14.15 at 12:45 pm

@#6 Happy Renting on 03.13.15 at 7:33 pm

>Slightly OT, but thank you HD & the other blog dogs
>who regularly suggest reading “Millionaire Teacher”.

Same here, thanks.

#156 Victor V on 03.14.15 at 12:52 pm

Get ready for a new round of speculation of a Canadian housing crash

http://business.financialpost.com/2015/03/13/housing-pullback-has-already-happened-but-crash-speculation-looms-as-prices-rise-on-a-national-level/

Mr. Klump said that if you use the IMF’s methodology — the group merged CREA numbers with Teranet results — you do find prices are up about 60% since 2000, but the gains have been relatively modest since 2009.

“It’s disingenuous to say we are rising the same way now as we were before the [2008] recession,” said the economist.

None of this will silence the voices loudly predicting a correction. The most outrageous call in a while came in January from Deutsche Bank, which said the Canadian housing market was in serious trouble and almost 63% overvalued. So much for the past decade and a half of gains.

#157 Obvious Truth on 03.14.15 at 12:55 pm

#150 Kam

You just raised the cost for all businesses and government. Who will pay for that. And will you be left behind.

It’s about proper policy for competitiveness.

The hard stuff no government wants to do. It’s easier to take on debt.

It’s the same for most people. Doing the right thing is very hard.

We are all immigrants and refugees. Should we complain that settlers were given free land.

Further to that solutions have to first recognize the problem. And plan for the future. It’s going to happen wether we like it or not.

Ask yourself the question. Why can’t one grade 3 teacher for example teach math to all grade 3 kids in the province of Ontario? Wherever they may be. And then let the algos mark the work. What will we do with all the teachers.

You have to ask the right questions before offering solutions.

I watch discovery right now and somebody is riding in a passenger seat in a car while it drives itself on regular roads. Algos are perfecting it. Cars will cost half. Weigh almost nothing and run on electricity. They will be built without humans. Likely less than 5 years away. The kids in Silicon Valley want to redefine everything. It’s awesome.

#158 bigtown on 03.14.15 at 1:02 pm

The latest employment from Stats Can show Ontario public service hiring. The GTA is looking more and more as if the main industry is government. Government is funded by taxpayers with paying jobs so it is hard to square how far the Ontario province can initiate economic growth under the present debt load. Keynesian theory has not been tested with the present model of next to zero interest rates and massive debt servicing. Ontario was a very smooth operator back in the 70’s and even the 80’s when interest rates were very high and we didn’t have to absorb so many highly educated and skilled workers but we are in a different ballgame. How many barristas with Masters can Starbucks absorb?

#159 Underhoused on 03.14.15 at 1:08 pm

@#108 No Canada, No

Congrats on the huge raise you got by moving to the US.

But OMG, seriously, hard to imagine a US East Coast city that is neither DC nor NYC (nor Boston) having more culture than TO. Sounds like you may be in Philly whose greatest cultural contributions are the cheese steak sandwich and a democracy shredded in the post 9/11 years.

A quick comparison for to put things in perspective. Philadelphia Museum of Art, collections: 227,000 objects, Royal Ontario Museum collections: over 6 million objects. Both cities have a bunch of museums and cultural institutions that backstop these. But TO is a much bigger city (Philadelphia population = 1.5 million, driving demand for limited number of tickets, ergo higher prices). FWIW, even the UofT managed to outrank the Ivy League University of Pennsylvania in the latest Times Higher Education World University reputation rankings (UofT, 16; UPenn, 23).

As for real estate, Zillow’s listings for downtown Philadelphia near City Hall and Rittenhouse Square make downtown TO look cheap! If you’ve ever had to walk around downtown Philly at night (work takes me there regularly), it is terrifying — dark, deserted, no-one on foot and, as crime stats verify, not safe — even in the “nicest” parts.

All those people fawning over you in the service industry? That’s the insidious legacy of American racism. It’s how African-Americans had to talk to white people before the Civil Rights movement, and that fake politeness and enthusiasm remains the standard for the US service industry even long afterwards. It’s amazing that you mistake a code of behaviour for genuine enthusiasm to see you. As for American girls being sluts; well, that trope has been around forever (*snore*), but you’re just gauche enough to make that the cherry on top of your No, Canada, No manifesto.

There’s a lot wrong with the Canadian real estate market and the larger Canadian economy. But despite the US recovery, the realities of the place are easily lost — maybe because the don’t seem to require translations — on many Canadians.

#160 besmirched on 03.14.15 at 1:08 pm

Was George Carlin the original Smoking Man? This guy was a freaking genius in his observation of others and social norms.

His take on religion/aliens:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TC5TBWfORlY

And consumerism:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egwghf1lPik

#161 AfterTheHouseSold on 03.14.15 at 1:10 pm

#127 maxx
“I want to avoid buying re because of the taxation, fee and energy horror show that is now inevitable. Just look at Ontario.”

Amen to that. The longer I am away from home ownership, the less inclined I am to buy.

I have come to see home ownership as the ultimate conduit to your wallet via the associated and escalating taxes. From the land transfer tax, property taxes, realtor and lawyer fees, to the HST on all related goods and services: garbage pickup, water bill, hydro bill and ongoing maintenance costs.

#162 TurnerNation on 03.14.15 at 1:10 pm

Am I priced out of Toronto housing?

Well, I was never in the market for a $1 million+ home.
(Like I’m not “priced out” of Ferraris, as I would never consider this price point as mine.)

Sub 1m we have sht long branch bungs and slanty Leslieville semis (on-street parking natch).

However, I can name 10 ETFs (From income to bonds to REIT funds) with yields of 4.5%-7%. That’s my kind of market.

And no way I’m paying 350k for a 550sq foot
thinly-built kando. Waste of money.

#163 unbalanced on 03.14.15 at 1:12 pm

I live in a 3k square foot paid home for less than 700 a month. Its a steal of a deal …why sell.

#164 CPG on 03.14.15 at 1:40 pm

The following is the topic on Cross Country Checkup (CBC Radio) on Sunday (tomorrow):

Are Canadians dangerously in debt thanks to expensive housing and cheap credit?

http://www.cbc.ca/radio/checkup/are-canadians-dangerously-in-debt-thanks-to-expensive-housing-and-cheap-credit-1.2994284

#165 Porsche on 03.14.15 at 1:42 pm

#151

Unbelievable…

Median earnings of Canadians employed on a full-time basis for a full year changed little during the past quarter century, edging up from $41,348 in 1980 to $41,401 in 2005 (in 2005 constant dollars).

Yet housing has more than quadrupled in price, I paid $73,000 for my first 1200 sq ft 3bdr dble gar house in 1988 give or take a year.

#166 Nemesis on 03.14.15 at 1:46 pm

#DidIMissAnything?… #Oh,Right… #YouSayIt’sYourBirthday!!??…

https://youtu.be/7WAphzIXlhY

[Ok, BlogDogs… you can put on your party hats now.]…

#167 Julia on 03.14.15 at 1:47 pm

I know this isn’t about real estate or finances but I just love it and it ties into the immigration fear mongering theme of late.
http://m.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/columnists/mr-harper-you-may-have-missed-your-calling/article23446873/?service=mobile

#168 western observer on 03.14.15 at 1:48 pm

Re: #108 No Canada No

Couldn’t agree more on the pathetic customer service in Canada.

Americans are miles ahead of us.

There was a poll done recently and Vancouver women were voted the snottiest in Canada.

Tired of the anti American sentiment.

If you don’t like America, then back it up.
-Don’t watch the NFL
-Don’t have an iphone
-Don’t buy an American vehicle
-Don’t vacation there.
-Don’t go to university there.
-Don’t watch American tv shows or movies

In fact if you are so anti American , back it up and don’t use anything developed, invented, made in or located in America. Hypocrites!

It is like the militant vegan who wears leather shoes.

#169 David McDonald on 03.14.15 at 2:03 pm

Oil really can be a curse. In counties like Iran, Venezuela and Russia it has enabled poor economic decisions and bad government. In Canada oil money has driven up the dollar and created a perfect example of the Dutch disease.
It will be a long struggle to win back an innovative, diversified industrial base and unfortunately Smoking Man’s comments above do describe a certain reality in Ontario. We are entering a difficult period for sure but Canada has so much going for it and that includes our American neighbour who is fortunately on the mend.

#170 Debtfree on 03.14.15 at 2:23 pm

@144 nag don’t forget those TFW stealing all our temporary housing out from under us real canadians .

#171 Lorne on 03.14.15 at 2:30 pm

You did. Now it’s time to prepare for the consequences.
We’ll start Sunday.
———————————

We’ll start what on Sunday? Translation, anyone?

……………………….

Garth’s next blog, written on Sunday, will be on this topic.

#172 Ken Nash on 03.14.15 at 2:34 pm

Fifty shade of depression. The litany of daily economic dread is dismal. The real estate insight is appreciated Garth and how to cushion ourselves from change. But what about our country Canada?

Where did and when did we go so wrong? How could a nation so strong and economically diverse lose it’s way since the 1940s?

I’d really like to know what Garth Turner would do to turn this sinking ship around? What steps to take to build a robust domestic economy. Where our corporate champions flourish because their Canadian.

Just one Garth. Wave the flag and show the way to the light at the end of tunnel. That’s not a TFS in a U.S, ETF, which is good for us. What can we be done for them? The proud workers who’s only skill is work ethic. How do we help them?

To me there is way too much in common with 1914 and now. Whole generations disenfranchised filled with hopelessness. Eager to show their worth. In 1914, wealth from owning land for aristrocrats. Subsistence living for those who toiled on the land.

Replaced today, with public sector pension funds and wealth from owning shares. Extracting more than their fair share from the economy. The early retirement entitlement crowd, “We’re doing YOU a favour by retiring early”

A basic understanding of economics shows an employer worker contributes more to the economy than a retired one. Don’t start with we buy stuff and go restaurants so we create jobs. That’s stupid and self serving. It’s like a some restaurant owner thinking, “Let’s higher a house keeper and if they come to the restaurant once a month it’ll increase the profit of the restaurant.”

I hear the we spur the economy mantra from public sector unions and politicians so much, one wonders who they are trying to convince. At least Marie Antoinette didn’t expect other’s to have to work for their cake. That didn’t end so good.

France has a history rich in civil discord. A year ago it pitched to the EU, corporate dividends over the rate of economic growth should be taxed at a draconian rate. Makes sense to me. Invest back into the business or perish not some civil servants travel plans who’s pension fund is demanding excessive returns.

So Garth? Before heads roll and world goes to war because it’s something to do and get patriotic about. How would Garth nurture Canadian companies?

#173 VINCE TURNER on 03.14.15 at 2:36 pm

2/3 of Canada’s housing bubble is fueled by immigrants – BNN.

‘BNN’ is a television channel. Who said it? Link? — Garth

#174 Storefront Sam on 03.14.15 at 2:50 pm

I have no memory of such a program. Link? — Garth

I remember that program. In the late eighties I had a house in Saskatoon and rates were 18%. Government bought it down to 9.75%. Got a rebate cheque every month.

There was no such federal program, I believe. It was provincial? — Garth

#175 tundra pete on 03.14.15 at 2:57 pm

Temporary Foreign Worker replaces:

T Too
F Frigging lazy to
W Work

Yes basement dwelling entitlement crowd. “You owe me”, I’m too busy to work. I’m not working at Tims. Hey, have you got two dollars I can borrow for a coffee?

This is where Temporary Foreign Worker comes from.

#176 Drill Baby Drill on 03.14.15 at 3:01 pm

Canada as a whole has been very lazy when it comes to searching for export markets for our raw materials and manufactured goods. We have always relied on the USA to purchase our wares. Now when the USA does not need our wares because they can import easily from Asia, Europe and South America we are screwed. Canada needs tide water access for it’s oil shipments and LNG as well as trade deals that are built on our ability to provide higher quality manufactured goods. Canada has to increase investment and R&D into higher end manufactured products or we will never get out of the cycle of dependence on the USA.

#177 Happy Renting on 03.14.15 at 3:13 pm

#152 – 4AM Sunrise

How’s the mate search going? (Any new Mr. Sailboats?)

Thought of your situation as I’ve started reading “The Millionaire Next Door”. About 2/3 of these millionaire households have a husband earning 80% of more of the income. A common theme with millionaire households is that the head/breadwinner reports having had very frugal parents, being frugal themselves, and having a spouse who is even more frugal than they are. The book is big on living below one’s means as a way to financial security.

It seems generally accepted around here that wives are ruinous to wealth because a financially-literate woman is uncommon. Are the ones who are out there in high demand?

In my own family it’s clear that two savers making decent incomes who get hitched and start investing makes for prosperous days. I feel as though we are perhaps atypical, though.

#178 kommykim on 03.14.15 at 3:35 pm

RE: #167 western observer on 03.14.15 at 1:48 pm
-Don’t watch the NFL
-Don’t have an iphone
-Don’t buy an American vehicle
-Don’t vacation there.
-Don’t go to university there.
-Don’t watch American tv shows or movies

I hate sports on TV.
Don’t have a `stupid’ phone.
Damn. I do have a Chev truck but also a Canadian assembled Honda car.
I haven’t gone stateside for decades.
Got my education in Canada.
I don’t watch any of their stupid so called “reality shows” or Fox news. Game of Thrones is good though.

4/6 isn’t too bad for someone less than 100Km from the border.
I’m not one of those who “hate” Americans. I do however “hate” their foreign policy in many cases and the dumbass GOP meme mimickers.

#179 Blogbitch on 03.14.15 at 3:44 pm

Was at an event last night in Calgary surrounded by people who were “in between jobs”. Not surprisingly, many were from the oil & gas sector. There was, however, no jubilant optimism about finding a new job soon. Those who used to be holier-than-thou corporate well-to-do types are now sniffing around, scrounging for work with their tail between their legs. In a matter of months, the arrogance level of those working in downtown Calgary has visibly plummeted.

#180 kommykim on 03.14.15 at 3:53 pm

RE: #167 western observer on 03.14.15 at 1:48 pm
In fact if you are so anti American , back it up and don’t use anything developed, invented, made in or located in America. Hypocrites!

Likewise, if you hate Canada so much, you can stop posting on a Canadian Blog written by a Canadian.

#181 TurnerNation on 03.14.15 at 4:11 pm

How the top of the pyramid level is doing it – stage global crises followed by a swift emotionally driven reaction.

Our govt comes off as nameless and blameless.

– Sure we’re bankrupt but it was a global oil crisis.
– Sure we wasted your tax money and rights but it’s a global war on (of) terror.
– Sure we’ve ruined the economy and rates but it was a global financial crises.

So many staged events unfortunately involving real people. Tip of is when our ‘leaders’ take to twitter. A few off the top my head:
– Kidnapped schoolgirls (what happened to them?)
– British solider, Cdn parliament, Halifax commando (only one, made-for-tv photo we were ever shown), Boston, planes going missing. Those planted stories of local kids joining “ISIS”. Surely they must be true.

What happened to Bath Salts? That trial balloon didn’t fly so they downed it.
They use twitter, facebook as info and intel gathering tools (weaponized) Reaction didn’t surface. Try again next time.
Al-Q? We hardly knew ya where’d ya go. Ditto Syrian and Libyan rebels, which were used to sell us on war.

#182 Washed Up Lawyer on 03.14.15 at 4:12 pm

#149 Retired Boomer – WI

Don’t shut up. Keep the comments coming. Your comments are informative, insightful, respectful and beneficial for us Canuckleheads as we receive a reasoned American perspective.

Garth does not enforce the “one comment rule” too hard. He is a bit of a softie on law and order issues. If that were not the case, I would have been three strikes and out.

Thanks.

#183 Porsche on 03.14.15 at 4:13 pm

#173 Storefront Sam on 03.14.15 at 2:50 pm
I have no memory of such a program. Link? — Garth

I remember that program. In the late eighties I had a house in Saskatoon and rates were 18%. Government bought it down to 9.75%. Got a rebate cheque every month.

There was no such federal program, I believe. It was provincial? — Garth

………………………………………………………………………

We had the AHMC in Alberta that capped mortgage interest rates at 12% because people were walking/loosing their homes when renewal time came up at 19%

#184 Storefront Sam on 03.14.15 at 4:17 pm

There was no such federal program, I believe. It was provincial? — Garth

Yes, I think it was provincial. Was so long ago don’t remember all the details lol.

#185 Roxy on 03.14.15 at 4:18 pm

Perspective Condos in Etobicoke:

“2015 is your year. Buy a sweet new condo and we’ll take care of your mortgage, condo fees, and tax for one year”

LMAO desperate much???

here’s the link: http://www.perspectivecondos.com/#livefree

#186 jess on 03.14.15 at 4:24 pm

In 2009 when the economist called the recession over the average person felt IT and the most securely employed still ended up in foreclosure.
=

-thoughtless executives who securitized bad mortgages to look like good investments WHY? mahoosive bonuses inventing and selling those securities

#187 45north on 03.14.15 at 4:29 pm

Fort Mac: When is it appropriate to catch a falling knife. I’m thinking about starting to toss out offers up here in the great white north

I know there is no such thing as job security these days, but it would require major plant closures to put mine on the block. Any help is appreciated.

you’re looking in the wrong places! Start with your job. Isn’t there some professional designation you could work on? in my field (IT) there are courses you can take and exams you can pass. You have the time and the money. Invest in yourself.

#188 The American on 03.14.15 at 4:36 pm

At #58: Underhoused, been to TO many times. It’s the ONLY thing going for Canada on its East coast, so you do the math. As for cultural hot spots in the East coast in the U.S., you forgot Charleston, SC, Miami, FL, Boca Raton, Fl, and twenty other cities or so. Never mind that, though. What really matters is you forgot the blatant racism that clearly exists in Canada. Word is out, and it’s worse than the U.S. BY FAR. Yeah, good luck with that… Yawn.

http://www.macleans.ca/news/canada/out-of-sight-out-of-mind-2/

http://www.nationalpost.com/m/wp/blog.html?b=news.nationalpost.com/2015/01/22/after-winnipeg-called-worst-place-in-canada-for-racism-city-leaders-admit-there-is-a-problem

http://m.huffpost.com/ca/news/canada-racism/

http://www.cbc.ca/m/news/canada/racism-still-an-uncomfortable-truth-in-canada-duncan-mccue-1.2831066

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/02/27/quebec-judge-refused-to-hear-case-because-muslim-woman-wore-a-hijab/

http://www.barenakedislam.com/2014/10/28/canada-shut-down-all-mosques-says-former-herouxville-councillor/

http://www.nationalpost.com/m/wp/blog.html?b=news.nationalpost.com/2015/01/22/after-winnipeg-called-worst-place-in-canada-for-racism-city-leaders-admit-there-is-a-problem

http://m.torontosun.com/2014/10/27/close-all-canadian-mosques-temporarily-quebec-politician-says

#189 chapter 9 on 03.14.15 at 4:38 pm

Kathleen Wynne is the poster child for irresponsible uncontrolled government spending of any state or province in North America other than Quebec. These two provinces must have a contest going on between them to see who goes broke first. By the time the books are maybe going to be balanced by 2017/18 over all debt will be a staggering $325 Billion!!!

#190 HD on 03.14.15 at 5:01 pm

@ #176 Happy Renting on 03.14.15 at 3:13 pm

Thought of your situation as I’ve started reading “The Millionaire Next Door”.

——————–

Another good read part of my personal collection.

Any of the female blog dogs / blog dogs running the Vancouver Marathon?

I was wondering if I was going to be the only greater fool representative…..thinking of wearing a banner of something…sponsorship ya know…

With Garth’s approval that is ;)

Best,

HD

#191 Setting the Record Straight on 03.14.15 at 5:06 pm

@
#168 David McDonald on 03.14.15 at 2:03 pm
Oil really can be a curse. In counties like Iran, Venezuela and Russia it has enabled poor economic decisions and bad government. In Canada oil money has driven up the dollar and created a perfect example of the Dutch disease.
It will be a long struggle to win back an innovative, diversified industrial base and unfortunately Smoking Man’s comments above do describe a certain reality in Ontario. We are entering a difficult period for sure but Canada has so much going for it and that includes our American neighbour who is fortunately on the mend.

No the problem is using currency revaluations to subsidize overpaid labour and capital in certain industries, often export industries but not always.
We did not have Dutch disease, we had overpaid industrial worker and capital disease.
We then compound the problem by Importing foreign workers to facilitate a more rapid expansion of oil production than would otherwise occur. And as well as subsidizing labour for the oil industry government interferes with interest rates. By lowering rates very capital intensive industries such as oil sands production are encouraged, promoting malinvestment.

#192 Cyclist on 03.14.15 at 5:09 pm

176 Happy R – it’s a very good book. i go back to it now and then as a bit of a “pep talk”. Helps me keep buying
$5K of carbon fibre in perspective.

#193 Setting the Record Straight on 03.14.15 at 5:11 pm

Consider the following thought experiment. Run a regression equation on relative housing prices to explain relative housing price by city. Variables might include population, average income, physical construction costs,
Etc. assume Vancouver is not included in the data set.
Then use the equation to predict relative prices in Vancouver. Doyou think it would produce a good estimate? If not why not?

#194 Danforth on 03.14.15 at 5:42 pm

Happy birthday Garth!

You, Albert Einstein, and I all share a birthday today!
So happy bday to us!

#195 Al on 03.14.15 at 5:49 pm

Governments hired 24,300 people in a month when we have ballooning deficits ! How can they justify the deficit argument to put a lid on physician salaries while at the same time hire 24,300 people !

#196 Nosty, etc. on 03.14.15 at 5:58 pm

#141 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 11:19 am — “Big trucks and equipment at Kremlin…”

No sweat. Apparently, Putin is in Switzerland, as his girlfriend gave (or is about to) give birth. Another couple of crumbs — here and here. Salud!

#197 Victor V on 03.14.15 at 6:10 pm

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/high-consumer-debt-reflects-laissez-faire-attitude-to-borrowing-1.2988768

Sal Guatieri, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, acknowledges that “household credit growth has picked up a little bit in response to lower interest rates.”

But he also notes that Canada’s current personal debt ratio of 163 per cent is still lower than the U.S. record in 2007, just before the economic collapse, which was 177 per cent.

“There is a reason to be concerned, but not to the point that we should panic,” says Gautieri.

Even so, a recent report from the McKinsey Global Institute says that between 2007 and mid-2014, only one country had larger growth in household debt than Canada — Greece.

#198 mitzerboy aka queencity kid on 03.14.15 at 6:23 pm

I bought my first house spring of ’83

needed 20% down

good ol grant devine brought my interest rate down from 18% to something much lower …didn’t much matter then ….it was lovin and partying all the time …
different ball game now

#199 Ogopogo on 03.14.15 at 6:59 pm

#123 Hamish42 on 03.14.15 at 5:46 am
We have reached the inflection point for the MSM coverage of the Canadian housing market. On the same day (3/13) Gary Marr at NP posts two articles one of which is the usual “everything is awesome” mls report but the other actually mentions Teranet data and talks of a pull back in RE prices.

I often expose Garry Marr’s pro-bubble bias. He wants to have his housing cake and eat it too, talking out of both sides of his mouth. At the end of the day, he’s just a scared pseudo-journalist spewing the official argot of his real estate overlords who (barely) maintain mainstream “old” media (i.e. newspapers) alive.

#200 western observer on 03.14.15 at 7:00 pm

RE: #179 Kommykim

Please don’t put words in my post.

Love my Canada – nowhere does it say I hate it.

I think America is a great neighbour and am tired of the anti America folks.

#201 Nemesis on 03.14.15 at 7:00 pm

#NowThere’sAnAwesomeCoincidence[?]… #Vlad’sDisappearing… #RightWhenTheSouthAfricansPerfect…

[Salon] – First penis successfully transplanted from one body to another

…”According to a statement, the patient “has made a full recovery and has regained all function in the newly transplanted organ.”

This is only the second attempt — the first took place in 2006 in China, but had to be reversed after two weeks when the patient experienced psychological problems after the operation.”…

http://www.salon.com/2015/03/13/first_penis_successfully_transplanted_from_one_body_to_another/

#InOtherNewsCujos&Zoomies…

[NYT] – WalkieTalkie: The Secret Language of Professional DogWalkers

http://nyti.ms/1BFsLWB

#202 Ogopogo on 03.14.15 at 7:01 pm

#122 Freedom First on 03.14.15 at 5:09 am
It is what people miss from what Garth teaches. Discipline, patience and knowledge are badly needed to orchestrate financial freedom and time looks after the exponential rewards of sane financial management.

I always enjoy your posts, FF, but you nailed it exceptionally well here. A definite quotable.

#203 Squirrel meat on 03.14.15 at 7:07 pm

#171 Ken Nash on 03.14.15 at 2:34 pm

Fifty shade of depression. The litany of daily economic dread is dismal. The real estate insight is appreciated Garth and how to cushion ourselves from change. But what about our country Canada?

Where did and when did we go so wrong? How could a nation so strong and economically diverse lose it’s way since the 1940s?
————————————-
Think it fair to say there has been a few positive developments in the past 70+ years……

#204 Leo Trollstoy on 03.14.15 at 7:09 pm

Thought of your situation as I’ve started reading “The Millionaire Next Door”.

This book is one of the best examples of survivorship bias.

#205 Squirrel meat on 03.14.15 at 7:14 pm

It’s your Bday!- well then…

For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), and so say all of us
And so say all of us, and so say all of us
For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow
For he’s a jolly good fellow (pause), and so say all of us!

http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m7yfbyGAYd1r5jwnb.png

#206 Happy Renting on 03.14.15 at 7:22 pm

#189 HD on 03.14.15 at 5:01 pm

Any of the female blog dogs / blog dogs running the Vancouver Marathon?

I was wondering if I was going to be the only greater fool representative…..thinking of wearing a banner of something…sponsorship ya know…

Marathon? Good for you!

I’m signed up for a few shorter races in Toronto, but after a health-induced, long absence from running my finish times will not be anything Garth wants this blog to be associated with.

Garth, let me know is there’s another blog out there deserving of ridicule and I’ll carry a banner advertising them, instead. ;)

#207 Prairieboy43 on 03.14.15 at 7:28 pm

Dog looks happy. Had a husky like that many years ago. He had the same look, with chicken feathers from his mouth. We had fewer chickens to pluck.

#208 Vote NDP on 03.14.15 at 7:33 pm

Vote NDP and split the vote. Re-elect Harper!!

Long live Bill c-51

#209 Happy Renting on 03.14.15 at 7:49 pm

Happy birthday Garth (and Danforth! Thanks for the reminder.)

We are having apple pie to celebrate Pi Day (so nerdy, I know!)

#210 kommykim on 03.14.15 at 7:55 pm

RE:#95 veej on 03.13.15 at 11:09 pm
Garth – if Canada is losing so many jobs why do we have 650,000 temporary foreign workers?

Because the CONs, via their lobbyists, want to keep wages low.

#211 Gerri on 03.14.15 at 8:15 pm

There was no such federal program, I believe. It was provincial? — Garth

It was Saskatchewan in 1982 under Grant Devine, called ‘The Mortgage Interest Reduction program’, and came into effect in July of 1982.

#212 Nagraj on 03.14.15 at 8:17 pm

#188 chapter 9
“Kathleen Wynne is the poster child for irresponsible uncontrolled government spending of any state or province in North America other than Quebec.”

Actually, Ontario is THE WORLD’S No.1 sub-state debtor. No other sub-national jurisdiction owes as much as the ca $300B Ontariario owes.

As for Quebec, the current gov’t will shortly pass an austerity budget – much lauded in the bond universe.
In the real world, I dare say, what Quebec’s current gov’t will get itself, is a repeat of the “Maple Spring” of 2012 with this difference: the cops (in or out of uniform) will be fraternizing with the protest marchers.

“Societal acrimony” will star in Act II of “Ponzi Schemes Gone Awry”.

#213 not me on 03.14.15 at 8:19 pm

I really don’t understand but perhaps it’s because I didn’t grow up here. The way I was brought up – you couldn’t ‘afford’ things unless you had enough cash to pay for them. I was thought to count on no one but myself and that meant to be prepared for the ‘rainy hour’.

I’m shocked to see what’s happening around me. Been reading this blog for a month or so and many opinions expressed here confirm that it is not me who is the crazy one.

I can’t believe people base their affordability level on possible future income, with no emergency fund and no plan B. It boggles my mind. How can these people sleep at night? How can people having no money (or very little) base their assumptions on variables such as having job that is not guaranteed, borrow at rates that might change in the future, borrow with amortization period of a quarter of a century, especially borrow for assets that although have potential (no guarantee) of market value appreciation, will in fact, deteriorate over a period of time? It’s one thing to have a sizable down payment and a small enough mortgage payments that will allow for lets say two people with full time, stable jobs to live comfortable life, save for the future and be covered in case where one of them loses a job or interest rates start to fluctuate or unexpected illness strikes (possibility of both losing jobs or getting ill are probably low). But to have people’s plan B as “the government will bail me out” or “the bank will help me restructure or consolidate” etc. in case things go sideways it’s beyond me.

Asking someone for help it’s like begging to me. What’s even worse is if one thinks that s/he is entitled to that help even though it was his/her own fault for not taking every precaution to protect themselves for the time of need.

Yep we live in a society of ‘fund me’ this and ‘fund me’ that because why should I sacrifice myself to live responsibly and to protect myself if I can just say screw that and live frivolously and when good times end I’ll just blame others and have the responsible ones pay for my mistakes and arrogance.

#214 Andrew Woburn on 03.14.15 at 8:21 pm

maxx on 03.14.15 at 7:35 am
#3 CPG on 03.13.15 at 7:27 pm

Chart of the total credit market debt in the United States versus its gross domestic product over the last 45 years:

http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/graph/?g=13ZC

Shocking. Hadn’t expected such a dramatic contrast. Guessing Canada has even more of a differential.
==============

It looks pretty scary and it probably is but there might be some mitigating factors at work here.

First of all, what assets were purchased with this debt?We know that cheap money has led to a lot of “hot money” flows to emerging markets. If this chart includes money borrowed in the US but invested in other countries, the earnings will not contribute to US GDP.

Second, if companies are financing mid and longer term US investments with cheap debt instead of equity, the debts should increase faster than the income they produce.

More worrisome is the possibility of double counting debt on the same asset. Lets say a hedge fund finances a sub-prime auto loan portfolio with a billion of borrowed cash. I assume this loan and the related billion of consumer debt will both show up in this chart even if there is only one set of collateral assets. Given the current trend to slice and dice financial instruments into tranches and even create “synthetic” collateralized debt obligations, you wonder how much debt can be pyramided onto any financial instrument.

Feel better now?

#215 gladiator on 03.14.15 at 8:39 pm

@141 Smoking Man:
Putin was away because of a pancreas issue.
My parents heard this info from a Kremlin employee.
Do not ask me details. I have my sources of info.

#216 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 8:39 pm

#159 besmirched on 03.14.15 at 1:08 pm
Was George Carlin the original Smoking Man? This guy was a freaking genius in his observation of others and social norms.
His take on religion/aliens:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TC5TBWfORlY
And consumerism:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egwghf1lPik
………

Absolutely amazing, and awesome, I was really starting to think I was losing my mind.

This just recharged me, thanks for the links..

The great stuff I learn here.
Adding George to my very short hero list, been watching his clips all afternoon

#217 BlackDog on 03.14.15 at 8:44 pm

I know what it is like to be a ghost – to scream and yell, and stomp, and cry, and yet no one is listening.

It is a big deal here on GT’s blog to diss immigrants. Call someone a ‘Chinese living in Canada’, and you get crapped on big time, possibly you even get a whole post dedicated to your assitude.

But, OMG, it is so wonderful to be an American. Everyone wants to be one.

And those ‘Americans living in Canada’ should not be bitching about their tax and reporting obligations to the USA.

Never mind that USA is the ONLY country in the world to have ‘place of birth’ taxation. Never mind that one million fellow Canadians (oops sorry, ‘Americans living in Canada’) are getting screwed over by both the American and the Canadian governments for having lived decades in Canada clueless to USA’s unique to the world ‘place of birth’ taxation laws.

USA is special after all, thus to be American cannot possibly mean one is discriminated against.

Most blog dawgs here worship the US dollar, so what is my problem? Oh yeah, my Canadian parents birthed me in the USA. I am soooo special!

We had this discussion before. So, renounce. — Garth

#218 Nov54 on 03.14.15 at 9:09 pm

Hey Smoking Man…Nice post, nice spelling, 3D world is better than the flat world eh?
Looks like my work here is done, you’re not board anymore.
I’ll ride out now, don’t shoot me in the back as I go.
I know you’re the type.

#219 BlackDog on 03.14.15 at 9:16 pm

Garth, do you know what is involved in renouncing? I would love to renounce if I could do it without spending thousands of dollars, and a huge complicated reporting headache.

In 2008, renunciation was free. In 2010 it cost $450 (US), and in 2014 the fee was raised to $2,350 (approx $3000 Canadian). But that is small potatoes compared with the cost to come into tax compliance. One cannot just renounce and be done with it. Once you go down that path, you agree to check in with Uncle Sam, and agree that you either are or will be compliant with past tax reporting. This is a huge can of worms for people like me, who have lived entire lives unaware that USA considers us tax payers.

#220 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 9:20 pm

#214 gladiator on 03.14.15 at 8:39 pm
@141 Smoking Man:
Putin was away because of a pancreas issue.
My parents heard this info from a Kremlin employee.
Do not ask me details. I have my sources of info.
……..

Well that’s good news, hes the only one standing up to a perfect monopoly…

If geo politics where the airline industry, and we just ended up with Air Canada…ouch

#221 4 AM Sunrise on 03.14.15 at 9:23 pm

#176 Happy Renting on 03.14.15 at 3:13 pm

I think that in theory, women who are financially literate are in high demand. In reality…I don’t know. That aspect of me was part of the appeal for the last guy I dated. Too bad he also expected me to be his emotional punching bag.

#222 Cyclist on 03.14.15 at 9:25 pm

We missed Pi day!! 3.141592653….

#223 BlackDog on 03.14.15 at 9:27 pm

Garth, Did I forget to mention that because I did not report my Canadian bank accounts to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network each year, that USA can penalize me to the tune of 50% of the value of each account for 6 years of non-reporting to a total of 300%.

This is what FATCA is all about – terrorizing the crap out of retirees, or soon to be retirees. To tell us to just renounce, is to have no concept of the injustice of the situation. You may as well why you are at it, tell the Chinese living in Canada to go back to China if they don’t like being referred to as Chinese in Canada. It is that bad. I am surprised you cannot figure this out for yourself.

#224 BlackDog on 03.14.15 at 9:33 pm

Bad Garth Bad! I am seriously disappointed. Every once in awhile you seem to show an empathetic side to your personality, but you don’t seem to understand how horrible it is to be deemed property of the USA, and have the Canadian government support this by agreeing to send an inventory of private financial info belonging to Canadians living in Canada to a foreign government. Seriously, do you really think this is cool?

#225 46 and 2 on 03.14.15 at 9:52 pm

I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.

#226 Burls on 03.14.15 at 9:58 pm

The anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese meme that bubbles up here every day is even more pathetic than the blog itself.

LOL … Well said, Mr Turner

#227 Squirrel Meat on 03.14.15 at 10:07 pm

#216 BlackDog on 03.14.15 at 8:44 pm
Oh yeah, my Canadian parents birthed me in the USA. I am soooo special!

We had this discussion before. So, renounce. — Garth
———————————————————–
Our son is in same boat .Just turned 19.. We birthed him in Cali, but he only lived there 2 years…. really wrestling with what to do. And yeah they just jacked up the fees to renounce. Ouch.

Sister in law has same problem… she has been paying a fortune to accountants trying to deal with it.

Keep telling him I’m gonna send him back to be our anchor baby.

#228 Andrew Woburn on 03.14.15 at 10:07 pm

#224 46 and 2 on 03.14.15 at 9:52 pm
I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.
==========
OK. Where do you plan to work next?

#229 kommykim on 03.14.15 at 10:23 pm

RE: #199 western observer on 03.14.15 at 7:00 pm
RE: #179 Kommykim
Please don’t put words in my post.

Only Garth can do that. I made my own post.

Love my Canada – nowhere does it say I hate it.

Correct. I should have directed my wrath more towards “#108 No Canada, No”‘s post than your supporting role of it.

I think America is a great neighbour and am tired of the anti America folks.

This Blog is also about balance and diversification. If we are to have the “Ra Ra USA USA #1” folks, then we also need to have the opposite of that.
I live in BC and cringe every time I hear Christy Crunch say that BC is the best place on Earth. It’s an indirect way of saying that the rest of the world sucks. Same goes for the USA#1 folks.

#230 kommykim on 03.14.15 at 10:27 pm

RE: #221 Cyclist on 03.14.15 at 9:25 pm
We missed Pi day!! 3.141592653….

You have wheels on that bike do you not? Every day is Pi day.

#231 not me on 03.14.15 at 10:37 pm

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2992870/Groom-fails-math-test-Indian-bride-walks-wedding.html lol

#232 gladiator on 03.14.15 at 10:39 pm

@219 Smoking Man:

Pancreas cancer, to be more precise.
Medvedev was flying everywhere on a helicopter to handle things for the Big one.
Steve Jobs died because of this type of problem. So no one knows how long he has to live.
Although, I spoke with an acquaintance of mine today and her mother got rid of cancer with a huge dose of… baking soda (plus molasses). Cancer doesn’t like alkaline environments. She had a drain in her abdomen to get out fluids (liver stopped working) and lungs had cancer too. Now, the lady lives an ok life, goes to the market, no drains, no pills, no signs of cancer. Just taking Graviola pills (btw, does anyone know why health food stores stopped selling these in Toronto? I got the last 2 containers from Noah’s market on Yonge last summer).
I know I sound weird, but remember what I wrote here about Putin. Some day you will learn that what I wrote was right.

#233 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 10:39 pm

MSM, like watching a wounded animal on the road, in a confused epileptic spasm trying to find its bearings. It can’t see the transport truck bearing down from behind.

Everyone in the news room wants to re establish credibility, they want to use the words, building 7, free fall speed in a endearing sentence.

They will get fired if they even remotely go close to that topic.

Its like saying 6 million dident die.

The audience, it knows. Everybody knows. Leonard Cohen song, it’s on the buds right now.

This is the world we live in.

Hence bill c-150, the machine wants to know who knows.

Idiots, everybody knows.

#234 valleyrenter on 03.14.15 at 10:54 pm

Hey Vanecdotal, don’t know if you’ve seen this one yet. Cressey is trotting out new condo development in White Rock. Marketing is being done by MAC-the ‘yellow peril’ specialists, lol.

#235 MGTOW on 03.14.15 at 10:56 pm

President Putin is dead.
Long live president Putin.

Wonder what the stock market is gong to do come Monday?

#236 Swirlin down the can on 03.14.15 at 11:49 pm

What do you call people who express themselves with angry cognitive dissonance when they have been proven wrong time and time again…. Oh yeah……deniers.

Meanwhile ‘The Poloz Plan’ is working. We are heading back to the 1940’s where people will dig rocks and cut trees…and move away from urban life because they can’t afford it. Poloz hates Canada…he’s like Obama in that way….everything has to burn in order to create a new world.

His Newfoundland coal barons and iron ore titans are getting excited….after Poloz called them in to provide advice…they have twisted Canada into a shivering wreck…and that’s good for business. If they can drive the $C down to 20 cents…they can undercut every mine in the world and make hay…..just like in the good ole days””the 1940’s…when Canadians were living in prairie shacks and happy to eat cod heads in soup.

Internationally, where dollars are being traded over the counter as opposed to in Canadian newspapers…the situation is much worse than is being reported. No one wants to hold the $C in stock so a deep discount is attached to every trade. Here in Asia the $C trades at a stiff 25% less the the USD today.

So….when you mention imports going way up in price…you are correct…every container is gaining value as ships cross the Pacific….Canadians under the Poloz Mandate are going to start stripping ditch sides for edible weeds and berries before summer is over.

I think a growing unease at the meager dinner table while seeing the obvious riches that lay in plain sight when Canadians observe their civil service living large will impact emotions at the ballot box. Harper may be defeated…not by terrorists head scarves …but by hungry people desperate for any way out of the gruesome hungry mess Poloz has brought on us.

#237 Smoking Man on 03.14.15 at 11:54 pm

Hammered out of my God damn mind, what words can I chose to say to you, bastards.

It’s not about us and them.

It’s me… I, if your an us or then. You lose.

Dr Smoking Man

#238 Brydle604 on 03.15.15 at 2:51 am

Inequality for all, Robert Reich
Interesting documentary on how the middle class has lost their ability to afford, and have resorted to debt to maintain their life style. looks like same thing has happened in Canada

http://ffilms.org/inequality-for-all-2013/

#239 Hicksville Alberta on 03.15.15 at 4:04 am

# 53 Washed Up Lawyer

” Absent some visionary and innovative entrepreneur, i ask the same question Merle Haggard asked ” Are the Good Times Really Over for Good””.

Your answer to this can be found from non other than the great Merle who subsequent to 2001 produced ” Where Did America Go ” .

There is an exceptional video of this on youtube, well worth watching for any and every body. Brilliant, humbling and true.

Fasten your seatbelts for your glorious ride into the future. It won’t be fun for anybody.

#240 In Van on 03.15.15 at 4:21 am

If Vancouver is skyrocketing due to foreign millionaires, why did the market surge recently with a .25 change in interest rates? It’s locals borrowing their brains out. The foreign money doesn’t need mortgages.

#241 maxx on 03.15.15 at 7:53 am

#108 No Canada, No on 03.14.15 at 12:00 am

Completely agree. There is not a single time I’ve been to the U.S. where I’ve had an incidence of marginal service, let alone poor service. They not only invented great service, they deliver, consistently- and everywhere, from NYC’s highest-end shops to second hand shops. I’ve traveled to almost every state over a period of nearly 40 years.

Here, in good ol’ Canada, you are practically guaranteed a hit rate of at least 50% snotty, supercilious and despicable attitude. You’re made to feel as though your an intrusion, a nuisance. Horrid service. Oh, and the stench of arrogance. What is it about Canadians, that they think they are superior to Americans?

Shopping in the U.S. is like coming up for air. Businesses there, whether you buy or not, make you feel like royalty. I love spending in the states. Love it. I create my list of wants between trips and buy there.

Some of the best service you’ll find in Canada is in second-hand shops. The attitude is consistently excellent, and these are mainly volunteers.

Those shops that offer decent service get all of my shopping dollars.

But overall, shopping in Canada truly sucks.

#242 Nov54 on 03.15.15 at 8:00 am

That’s right, get hammered , celebrate…
I’m almost out of sight…

#243 maxx on 03.15.15 at 8:04 am

#121 Freedom First on 03.14.15 at 4:19 am

….”The treatment of workers who still have jobs is also deteriorating rapidly. Workplaces are becoming cesspools of misery in so many antagonizing ways I can’t even report all of the injustices taking place.

There is a reason the oldtimers always advise on having what they call FU money socked away.”

I know so many people who are miserable at work and constantly losing sleep because of extreme stress levels. Much of their private time is spent either trying to find a solution to it, or simply recovering from it.

FU money is the only kind of money. It buys you your time and by extension, your life.

#244 maxx on 03.15.15 at 9:22 am

#149 Retired Boomer – WI on 03.14.15 at 12:01 pm

“I’ll shut-up now.”

No need. You’re correct.

#245 Dominoes Lining Up on 03.15.15 at 10:10 am

Perhaps another domino of public perception might just start to wobble today?

CBC radio is doing a two hour call-in show today on the housing and credit bubble.

http://www.cbc.ca/radio/checkup

“Are Canadians dangerously in debt thanks to expensive housing and cheap credit?”

Garth – have you been invited?

#246 maxx on 03.15.15 at 10:57 am

#158 Underhoused on 03.14.15 at 1:08 pm

No sale. Awkward and flaccid rebuttal.

Toronto…..imho, not, in some important respects, quite representative of the concept behind, OK, let’s take “phila” delphia (talk about low-hanging fruit):

A few years ago, I asked for directions whilst visiting “T.O.” from a respectable looking, middle-aged man. He proceeded to look straight through me and walked on. His companion, an even better-dressed, better-looking chap, stopped immediately and answered my question. The one who initially ignored me did a sudden 180 degree behavioral turn and was all smiles and attention. (The decent one must have been either his superior or from out of town, or both, I thought).

By contrast, and entirely out of the realm of retail compromise, every single time I’ve asked a private citizen in the U.S. for assistance, it’s been sheer pleasure. I love so much about Canada, but there is a streak of indolent, selfish, entitled, jealous nastiness in this country which needs to change. Canada is seriously productivity-challenged with a huge attitude problem.

Confusing great service with some sort of affection is a very weird species of crap-service justification and precisely why service in this country sucks so badly….offering great service would be tantamount to subservience, now, wouldn’t it? Beneath Canadian? Eh?

Work is work. It’s not meant to be easy….it’s work! Americans get it.

And using history as a device to bolster such drivel makes yours one of the, oh, what’s the word, dumbest posts I’ve come across since inception.

#247 the truth on 03.15.15 at 11:02 am

who`s the problem, the drug dealer or the drug addict?

central banks are the direct cause of house price bubbles, as they are for stock market bubbles. they give out free money to anyone who wants it. like free cocaine.

you have no choice as a drug addict. you pile on more and more debt. why? it’s free. you don’t care about tomorrow.

the problem has been, and always will be central bankers. recession? pump free money to get it going. next time there’s a recession, pump more money. deep the drug addicts happy and satisfied.

there is no incentive to save. this is solely the doing of central banks.

bank of canada should raise rates to 4% and let the chips fall where they may.

#248 Cod head soup on 03.15.15 at 11:03 am

The future.
http://youtu.be/D97OxHZzBeQ

#249 Mike T. on 03.15.15 at 11:05 am

‘I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.’

when is TOOL coming out with a new album?

#250 46 and 2 on 03.15.15 at 11:05 am

#224 46 and 2 on 03.14.15 at 9:52 pm
I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.
==========
OK. Where do you plan to work next?
==========
Luckily enough I will be amongst the last standing come this June/July. Based on factual sales (not propped up by spec homes) going forward, most estimates are that approx. 60% of the people currently building new homes/condos/whatever in the Calgary region will be out of work. This will of course also spin off to all levels of suppliers/admin, etc.

#251 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 11:10 am

@#234 MGTOW

Putin is dead? Bwahahahahahahahahaha.
I wish.
Please dont tell me you believe those russian conspiracy theories( Russian the most paranoid population on earth) OR the latest gossip from the Daily Mirror of England…
Until I see his head on a pole in front of the Kremlin on CNN or the New York Times……..
He’s still in power.
OR maybe the Daily Mirror is right and he’s gone to see his 31 year old girlfriend in Switzerland because she just popped out another mini me Putin……..

#252 jess on 03.15.15 at 11:18 am

” The most outrageous call in a while came in January from Deutsche Bank ”
..the descriptive words / fines/”errors” are what is outrageous…perhaps it takes one to know one.

gemstone VII
Deutsche Bank was one of the major drivers of the collateralized debt obligation (CDO) market during the housing credit bubble from 2004–2008, creating ~$32,000,000,000 worth. The 2011 US Senate Permanent Select Committee on Investigations report on Wall Street and the Financial Crisis analyzed Deutsche Bank as a ‘case study’ of investment banking involvement in the mortgage bubble, CDO market, credit crunch, and recession. It concluded that even as the market was collapsing in 2007, and its top global CDO trader was deriding the CDO market and betting against some of the mortgage bonds in its CDOs, Deutsche bank continued to churn out bad CDO products to investors.[36] wiki

#253 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 11:18 am

@#224 46 x 2

Why are 2×4’s actually 1.5 inches x 3.5 inches?
Why are the glaciers melting in the Rockies?
Why do people drown every year in the Bow river in Calgary at the weir?
Why isnt Calgary called Bragg Creek and Bragg Creek called Calgary?
Why does the zoo in Calgary have cement dinosaurs?

#254 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 11:36 am

@#216 Blackdog

You have the option to renounce your US citizenship as many (1800 in 2013. More than 2007, 2008 and 2009 combined. The largest amount of citizens to renounce since the IRS started publishing their number in 1998.) of expatriot americans have done in the past year……….

http://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=7&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CEQQFjAG&url=http%3A%2F%2Ftaxlitigator.me%2F2013%2F08%2F09%2Ftax-consequences-resulting-from-renouncing-u-s-citizenship-by-lacey-e-strachan%2F&ei=36MFVeyGK8ieoQS5nYLIAw&usg=AFQjCNEtf7Z-4s-V0Gtg-M4VOruYL2jaAA

However if you have assets worth over 2 million US you must file an “exit tax form” or prove that you have filed US income tax over the past 4 years before exiting.
The downside of ignoring this whole “tax issue”
The IRS can put you on a “tax evader” list and you could be detained upon entering the US.
Canada cant extradite you to the US for tax avoidance……yet.

The joys of dual citizenship.

If it’s any consolation Tina Turner has renounced her US citizenship.

good luck.

#255 Harbour on 03.15.15 at 11:41 am

Month after month…

These are pretty much the standard email replies I get back….

Thank you for your interest in a career with XXXX. We received your application for the position of Network Provisioning – XXXX. Due to unforeseen circumstances the position has been cancelled and we no longer require this position to be filled.

We’ve compiled the freshest job matches for you based on your job preferences.
Your Job Alert Results for telecommunications Jobs:
ZIP

Dear XXXX,
Thank you for the interest you have expressed in the Specialist, Core Network Support position. We would like to inform you that the role has now been filled.

We do encourage you to create a Job Alert to be automatically notified of future positions at XXXX that are of interest to you.

#256 46 and 2 on 03.15.15 at 11:57 am

@#224 46 x 2

Why are 2×4’s actually 1.5 inches x 3.5 inches?

– I believe it is an American standard

Why are the glaciers melting in the Rockies?

– Not sure but the water makes great beer

Why do people drown every year in the Bow river in Calgary at the weir?

– Mental retardation

Why isnt Calgary called Bragg Creek and Bragg Creek called Calgary?

– For the same reason a dog is called a dog and not a cat

Why does the zoo in Calgary have cement dinosaurs?

– So they don’t float away during floods

#257 Victor V on 03.15.15 at 11:59 am

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/never-mind-oil–if-housing-goes-bust–we-re-screwed-173315837.html

Real estate now makes up close to 13 per cent of Canada’s GDP, compared to less than 10 per cent for energy. The real estate industry is also a bigger employer than the mining, oil and gas sector. Of course, for the real estate market to remain strong, sectors such as manufacturing and energy must, too. Weakness in either would compound problems for the housing market, because it would chip away at the jobs and wages people need to buy homes at such inflated prices.

Even if the housing market simply slows down from its torrid pace of the past five to 10 years, the impact will be widely felt. Should house prices actually crash, then we’re looking at a crisis far worse than anything oil prices could inflict.

#258 46 and 2 on 03.15.15 at 12:02 pm

‘I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.’

when is TOOL coming out with a new album?

After the grape harvest :), but they may have trouble competing with this https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&aq=&oq=46+and+2&hl=en-GB&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4GGNI_en-GBCA615CA615&q=46+and+2+kids&gs_l=hp..2.0l5j41l3.0.0.8.916473………..0.xWTTeiCQE58

#259 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 12:04 pm

@#253 Harbour.
Time for a career change?
Becoming a Realtor is only a 6 week course.
Stretching the truth to “make the sale” is, unfortunately, an obligatory job prerequisite.

#260 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 12:06 pm

@#254 46 x 2
Thank you for your timely and excellent responses..

#261 Sue on 03.15.15 at 12:18 pm

#253 Harbour on 03.15.15 at 11:41 am

“Month after month…
These are pretty much the standard email replies I get back….
Thank you for your interest in a career with XXXX. We received your application for the position of Network Provisioning – XXXX.”

And what is the message? No jobs in telecoms? What else can you do, or are you doing?

#262 DM in C on 03.15.15 at 12:22 pm

Spouse was laid off in Calgary two weeks ago Tues. BUT we expected it since Baker Hughes was purchased by Haliburton.

Nice package too…. especially since he’s had 5 interviews and one offer already. I can smell the new hardwood floors now…. The rest will top up his TFSA contribution room.

We’re planning to have no debt by the time the mortgage renews in two years. Well, except the mortgage, but I can carry that on my salary. I hope Canada comes out ok, but I think the housing crash is inevitable.

#263 Sue on 03.15.15 at 12:24 pm

#242 maxx on 03.15.15 at 9:22 am etc.

Yes, some Canadians are world-class at humility and smugness. Mind you, they have a lot to be humble about.

If you want arrogant service in the U.S. you can often succeed at an Apple store, or a Starbucks.

#264 Timing is Everything on 03.15.15 at 12:25 pm

“[For] The Teranet–National Bank House Price Index™, all properties that have been sold at least twice are considered in the calculation of the index; this is known as the repeat sales methodology. Properties that are affected by endogenous factors are not considered in the estimation. These factors may include: a) non-arms-length sale, b) change of type of property, for example after renovations, c) data error, and d) high turnover frequency (biannual or higher).

In the repeat sales methodology, the averaging of price appreciation from different pairs of sales is done using a complex estimation process in which each pair is a separate observation.” – Teranet

I know most know this. However, the actual link…

http://www.housepriceindex.ca/
—————————————————–
The perfect storm

“In Nova Scotia, the entire province faces a weather warning, with all four labels touching different parts of the province.”

http://tinyurl.com/krynrnt

NS is way better than NB. Half the damn snow. — Garth

#265 Moneyfromasia on 03.15.15 at 12:34 pm

Garth,

You seriously need to put an honest bid on a house in Rchmond BC. When you see that your bid is worthless to the pile of foreiners fleeing to Canada to compete with you. Over there, they only have land lease, there’s no real owning like over here. The imigration doors is set up to target wealthy Asians in particular. Sure the years leading up to the Olympics make all Canadians responsible for this housing situation but the economic engine of Canada now runs on immigrants that aren’t here for a job but to retire with cleaner air, the ability to have more than one child etc etc. they buy REal estate, cars, food and go to restaurants. With an election coming, you bet housing is going to get everything that it takes to prop it up till after the next election. Sure Canadians also need to buy homes, either trading up or trading down or sideways for different locations but they aren’t the ones in bidding wars here locally.
You have to also assess and include on the number of Canadians owning more that one home. I’m hearing the older generations (baby boomers) owning 2-3 homes is common. I agree that it’s not all Hot Asian Money, but in certain pockets, it is very much so!!!
Please be a little more open with your thoughts.

Thanks

#266 Underhoused on 03.15.15 at 12:34 pm

@ #244 maxx

You’re welcome to your opinions. But some greater precision on your part would be helpful. I chose Philadelphia not because it is low-hanging fruit, but because No, Canada, No gave their location as “NY is 2 hours on the train, DC – 2.5h car drive.” This means that they aren’t in NYC or DC (because then they wouldn’t need to travel), and Boston is too far north to make those travel times work.

What else is there besides Philly in the mid-Atlantic that is a reasonable candidate for the great hub of art and culture that No, Canada, No suggests that they live in in the location that they provide? There’s Princeton, Wilmington, Baltimore — all lower hanging fruit than Philadelphia, no?

As for the service industry, having partly grown up in the American south where the legacy of racism is all too clear — and where service itself as well as its performance was still racialized when I was a child, I have perhaps a differently informed sense of where American codes of service come from than you do. Funny thing, I think that people in the service industry should be able to sell me things without having to sell me their soul — it’s just stuff.

#267 Ralph Cramdown on 03.15.15 at 12:38 pm

#224 46 and 2 — “I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.”

What’s with Calgary building lot prices? The developers all say there’s a land shortage, Nenshi says there isn’t. After having approached Calgary by air, I’m inclined to agree with the mayor.

Many similar American cities with few geographical constraints never got bubbly prices, they just sprawled. I’m thinking Atlanta, Houston and the DFW Metroplex. Are Calgary land prices the biggest con job ever? Cartel of farmers holding a giant donut of land who won’t sell? Just developer posturing trying to get city development charges lower?

#268 Timing is Everything on 03.15.15 at 12:40 pm

Hang in there Nova Scotia! Hopefully the last one.

Just 4 u…

http://tinyurl.com/kysv6wx

(>_<)

#269 46 and 2 on 03.15.15 at 12:41 pm

@#254 46 x 2
Thank you for your timely and excellent responses..
=========
:)
I guess regardless of the situation a little humor can’t hurt?
Native Calgarian’s tend to have a wildcatter mentality and we have seen all of this before and we will again, but I will admit that the speed of this assault on the Alberta economy is astonishing. I expect the emigration will get underway soon.

#270 BillyBob on 03.15.15 at 1:10 pm

Greetings from 36,000 feet , somewhere over Greenland. The OnAir service is now only a buck on Emirates flights so I thought what the hell…should be resting but can’t resist the GF fix. Looking forward to a couple days in Starbucks-town.

What is with the weirdo attempting to take lame digs at Smoking Man? Kind of creepy.

Note to Nov24 guy – you already got your ass handed to you earlier in the comments – probably best just to lie down and wait for the hurt to pass.

#271 46 and 2 on 03.15.15 at 1:10 pm

#224 46 and 2 — “I work for a large new home builder in Calgary, ask me anything.”

What’s with Calgary building lot prices? The developers all say there’s a land shortage, Nenshi says there isn’t. After having approached Calgary by air, I’m inclined to agree with the mayor.

– You need to understand that land, lots and availability of these lots to builders with the city limits is controlled by the land developers and the exclusive group of builders that they work with, if you wanted to use the word “collusion” I would give you the nod.

– Nenshi seems to have forgotten that Calgary is basically a prairie city with little or no history or culture. It is what it is and if inner city growth was possible at all it should have been pushed about 30 years ago. Since I was a kid downtown Calgary has turned into a ghost town after the evening rush and even though I do enjoy the thought of the core turning into St. Catherine’s on a Friday night I highly doubt this is possible.

Many similar American cities with few geographical constraints never got bubbly prices, they just sprawled. I’m thinking Atlanta, Houston and the DFW Metroplex. Are Calgary land prices the biggest con job ever? Cartel of farmers holding a giant donut of land who won’t sell? Just developer posturing trying to get city development charges lower?

– See “collusion” above

#272 Harbour on 03.15.15 at 1:21 pm

Don’t laugh or poke jokes…

I’m in my mid 50’s so a career change is out of the question.

Telecom is more IT now… so my 30 year old Journeyman’s Telecommunications ticket means dick even with upgrade courses.

I live in Alberta so jobs aren’t plentiful no matter what your career is. I apply online Internationally and all over Canada.

If I was an American I’d be working as there’s lots of jobs still wanting Nortel experts. In Canada there’s no Nortel anywhere (Funny ha… Nortel being a Canadian company) and most telecom jobs are in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal wanting Ericsson, Nokia, Siemens, Huawei experts. You say your willing to relocate, but there’s 500 other people applying for the same position that live locally.

I even applied for a $13 an hour part time job at Home Depot here in Edmonton and didn’t get it. lol

To think 15 years ago when Nortel was still around I was working all over Europe making a $1,000 a day with the currency exchange… 1 British Pound was $2.50 Canadian back then.

Age is a big factor… why hire a fossil when there’s 500 thirty year old’s applying for the same position and will be around for the next 20 years.

So a message from a fossil… you’ll get here quicker than you think.

#273 jean on 03.15.15 at 1:58 pm

LOL, Australia, almost as dumb as the Canadians when it comes to houses:

“I get a lot of people approaching me saying that young people should be able to use their superannuation to fund a deposit on a home, on their first home”. … this dopey plan has been done before in Canada and who came up with it? It wasn’t first home buyers, it was the Canadian Real Estate Association, in the midst of a recession and housing down turn.

http://www.idiottax.net/2015/03/mortgage-regulation-australian-style.html

#274 45north on 03.15.15 at 2:36 pm

Swirlin: Canadians are going to start stripping ditch sides for edible weeds and berries before summer is over.

colourful

46 and 2: Why are the glaciers melting in the Rockies?

– Not sure but the water makes great beer

that’s what I always believed

#275 not me on 03.15.15 at 2:44 pm

@ #272 Harbour

I mean no disrespect but if you were making $1000/day 15 yrs ago what the heck are you doing looking for a job in your mid-50s? Wouldn’t you want to retire with all the money you’ve made?

#276 No Canada, No on 03.15.15 at 3:00 pm

#264 Underhoused

Next time when you go to a crappytire to fix your car, and get greeted by a guy with affectionate “Next!”
or take your bmw for a service at the dealership, and while trying to find an entrance to the service area get help from servicemen with “its over there” and waving at undefined direction
or when you ask Toronto airport employee for directions and get “go to the booth over there, my shift is over”
or call Rogers/Bell/Telus and get the dose of real Canadian service
or go to city hall to renew something and get greeted by lady with “I need 2 goverment ids”
or enter your condo building and get greeted by a concierge with ISIS-like look on his face, silently watching you crossing the hall

then think for a minute about this: why are they so truly unhappy? Canada is amazing and unique country, seriously. But why everything is so depressed then, especially in large cities which should be roaring?

Maybe because they can’t really afford anything, paying for ridiculously overprices housing and fully taxed by the goverment (and not only with direct taxes, but all those indirect ones like paying for parking in your own residential area, ridiculous car insurance premiums, hundreds government-sponsored programs for immigrants to “adapt” and so on)? Maybe because government takes care about everything so they _don’t have to_?

I would even say that they are not allowed to.

#277 Harbour on 03.15.15 at 3:33 pm

#275 not me

Let’s see…

1) Well that $1000 a day didn’t even last a year before the bubble burst..
2) Nortel stock went to zero
3) Another High Tech 100K investment went bust along with the tech bubble
4) Divorce took half of what was left

#278 crowdedelevatorfartz on 03.15.15 at 4:16 pm

@#272 harbour
How about IT consultant? Working for yourself as an paid by the hour advocate for businesses having problems with their networks?
Use your many years of experience to help a company troubleshoot through telco bullshite excuses as to why “the phone system is down……again.”
Ya never know.

#279 screwed on 03.16.15 at 3:13 pm

This is wrong:

“The anti-immigrant, anti-Chinese meme that bubbles up here every day is even more pathetic than the blog itself. We could bolt the doors tomorrow, trash our rep as a generous people and take the economic hit, but it wouldn’t drop prices in Van or 416. Because foreign buyers did not cause them.”

Maybe the foreign buyers didn’t cause it. But every idiot Vancouver buyer is thinking that the Chinese have driven prices up and every idiot Vancouver buyer is hoping that prices will keep going up with more money from China.

It doesn’t matter what the facts are. It matters what the real estate binging Vancouver buyers want to believe is truth.

Everyone is hoping to sell to a Greater Fool one day in the future. For now, the belief is that the next buyer is coming from China.

Rumors, speculation and cheap credit are driving this market.

Even if the BoC started tightening, it would perhaps slow down the speculation but it won’t stop it.

Good luck trying to quell the rumors….