It’s not so bad…

RYAN  By Guest Blogger Ryan Lewenza

Old, young, we all like to complain. We complain about the weather, our favourite hockey team that never seems to be able to get it done or our politicians who always seem inept, self-serving and short-sighted. It’s in our DNA and I get that. But no one likes constant complainers, especially those without the facts or sound reasoning behind their beefs. So this week I take a “glass half full” perspective, looking at some of the frequent complaints about Canada that I see in the comments section of this blog.

Complaint #1: Canadian deficits and rising government debt is going to trigger an economic crisis.

High government debt is a constant complaint among many of the blog dogs, and in some cases their concerns are justified. We live in a debt financed world where consumers spend money they don’t have and governments freely spend other people’s money. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, global debt has increased by US$57 tln since 2007 to a new record high of US$199 tln. When compared to GDP, global debt has increased from 246% in 2007 to 286% today.

While global debt is on the rise and is a concern, you have to look country by country to determine which ones are at most risk. Below is a chart of the largest nations in the world and top of the list are Japan, Italy, France and US with net government debt to GDP ratios of 127%, 110%, 87% and 80%, respectively.

In contrast, Canada has a net government debt to GDP ratio of just 38%, below that of even Germany, an economic powerhouse. (Note: this metric only considers net Federal government debt).

Now with the free spending T2 running the show in Ottawa and projected deficits of $29 bln this year, and $113 bln over the next five years, we’re going to be adding to our debt levels which requires close monitoring. However, given the size of our economy (roughly $2 tln in GDP), our current $680 bln in debt is well supported by the economy.

So Canada is in a much better fiscal positon than many believe, and why I’m not overly concerned about Canada’s current deficits and debt levels. Japan however, yikes…..

G7 Countries Net Government Debt to GDP Ratios

Source: IMF, Turner Investments

Complaint #2: Canada’s economy is poorly positioned for the 21st century

Some readers of this blog believe Canada’s best days are behind it citing things like an end to fossil fuels, changes in global trade and a lack of innovation in our country. I don’t agree with this view.

With the global push to renewables and the proliferation of electric cars, some believe the end of our fossil fuel economy is around the corner, and therefore Canada is screwed in the coming decades. I think this is very premature and see fossil fuels remaining a key energy source for some decades to come. According to an HSBC report, oil demand will grow by over 1 mln bls/day before peaking in 2040. And based on their analysis, the world will need to find 40 mln bls/day in output to keep up with demand from the emerging economies. Well, if that’s the case, then Canada is well positioned by having the third highest proven oil reserves in the world at 171 bln barrels.

World Proven Oil Reserves

Source: Gulf Business, Turner Investments

With respect to trade, while we’re likely to begin negotiations with our American friends in the coming months, I suspect it will be more of a tweaking of NAFTA than a major overhaul. First, the trade relationship between the US and Canada is the second largest trade relationship in the world at US$545 bln in goods in 2015. This equated to a trade deficit of US$11 bln in 2015 versus trade deficits of US$347 bln and US$63 bln with China and Mexico, respectively. If President Trump and the US are going to create a trade war, it’s unlikely going to be with us polite Canadians.

Finally on innovation, this is one area that I do have concerns about as we seem to be falling behind in innovation across important areas like science, technology, and health care. This can be seen in our lower levels of R&D expenditures relative to other countries and with the Conference Board of Canada ranking us 9th of 16 peer countries on innovation. However, T2 and gang seemed to be waking up to this reality with the Federal Liberals committing over a $1 bln this year on skills and innovation and more down the road.

Complaint #3: Canada’s overall quality of life is on the decline

Here the complaints are widespread from the lack of good jobs to our poor health care system and declining education system. Basically it’s the classic everything just sucks these days. Well, from an empirical perspective this is just not the case.

The OECD has constructed an index of different factors that evaluates the overall well-being across different countries. Canada ranks 5th overall of the 35 OECD countries, with high ratings in income (average household disposable income per capita is US$30,474 versus OECD average of US$29,016), in jobs (72% of people age 15-64 have a job versus OECD average of 66%), healthcare (89% of people in Canada reported to be in good health versus OECD average of 69%) and life expectancy (82 years versus OECD average 80).

The point of this is to show that Canada is a pretty amazing place with lots of things going right for it, and that we should step back and recognize many of these great attributes. And what better time to do this with us celebrating our 150th anniversary. O Canada!

Canada’s OECD Better Life Index Readings

Source: OECD, Turner Investments
Ryan Lewenza, CFA,CMT is a Partner and Portfolio Manager with Turner Investments, and a Senior Vice President, Private Client Group, of Raymond James Ltd.

140 comments ↓

#1 For those about to flop... on 04.01.17 at 2:21 pm

Old, young, we all like to complain. We complain about the weather, our favourite hockey team that never seems to be able to get it done…InfLewenza.

//////////////////////////////////

You leave my Philadelphia Flyers out of this…

M42BC

#2 Paulo on 04.01.17 at 2:24 pm

Great stuff Ryan, very interesting and a bit of sunshine to boot. Certainly makes a case for considering the maple side of there investment portfolios
so other than oil what captures your attention,and should be considered by long term dividend investors?

#3 It's too damn cold on 04.01.17 at 2:26 pm

My glass hasn’t defrosted yet… but yeah Canuckistan is a pretty awesome place all round.

Dollarama nation! that stock has been a true gold mine

#4 Ponzius Pilatus on 04.01.17 at 2:37 pm

The problem with such lifestyle surveys is that the measure feelings rather than facts.
Canadians always compare themselves and there has always been a sense of smugness.
Like in Vancouver, where everyone buys the Best Place on Earth crap.
Of course, if 24 month surgery wait lists are ok with, then you’ll see it through a glass halve full.

#5 For those about to flop... on 04.01.17 at 2:39 pm

Canada ,number 2 in housing?

Happy April Fools Day…

M42BC

#6 Ponzius Pilatus on 04.01.17 at 2:39 pm

Sorry for the sloppy posting.
Got so worked up about the nonsense.
“Canadians always compare themselves to the Americans”

#7 Long-Time Lurker on 04.01.17 at 2:40 pm

My take on Japan:

Japan’s economy has been in decline for two decades –since the 90’s. They’ve been firing fiscal & economic policy bullets at their problem for years to no avail.

To no avail because their economic decline is due to their aging and shrinking population –a demographic problem not monetary policy one.

Japan looks to be on a continuing course of decline unless they: 1. Increase their population’s birth rate. 2. Allow immigration to off-set their population decline. 3. Get their robot economy on-line.

#8 TLG on 04.01.17 at 2:54 pm

How much does he picture change when u factor in Provincial debt, especially Ontario ?

#9 Keith on 04.01.17 at 2:57 pm

Ryan Lewenza, this is how much quality of life in Canada has declined:

There was a time in Canada when someone who was forced by family tragedy to leave school early could get a unionized job with security, earn enough money to raise a family in a single family home that you owned in a decent neighbourhood and put them through higher education, and retire on an index linked pension.

For a thirty year old today, the vast majority will be unable to achieve a fraction of this level of economic security and certainty. Look at all the prescription medicated people, stress leaves etc. – didn’t happen much when I was a boy.

Canada has changed negatively for the average person since the election of Mulroney, and doesn’t look to be getting much better anytime soon.

#10 Vit on 04.01.17 at 2:57 pm

Long live Canada . Great country with bright future . Only problem is cold weather . We should join Turks and Caicos so we can retire in worm places .

#11 jay on 04.01.17 at 3:09 pm

Why isn’t China ever included in these comparison’s ,aren’t they the largest economy in the world? http://www.tradingeconomics.com/china/government-debt-to-gdp

#12 Herb on 04.01.17 at 3:15 pm

Well done, Ryan.

Of course, the glass looks much different when one adds ideology and party politics to one’s perspective.

#13 Enjoyed the read on 04.01.17 at 3:24 pm

Why is our healthcare rated so low ? What were the metrics used ?

#14 TurnerNation on 04.01.17 at 3:29 pm

Will they ring a bell…

Today’s Report on Business has a retiree who blew an inheritance in an illiquid Mortgage Investment Corp.

Send him here….bike babes and balanced portfolios.

#15 Penny Henny on 04.01.17 at 3:30 pm

But no one likes constant complainers, especially those without the facts or sound reasoning behind their beefs.

Hear that Euro Observer

#16 Farnam Mohasseb on 04.01.17 at 3:30 pm

The last chart ranks Canada housing 2nd. Makes the rating very questionable considering Vancouver and Toronto, which majority of population lives are in a bubble and not even the top 1% base on income can buy anything.
The current land owners / developer / realtor are doing great though.

#17 Capt. Serious on 04.01.17 at 3:38 pm

Most of the issues people complain about here are first world problems. Travelling to other countries makes one realize how good things are here. Are there better places? Sure. Are there marginalized groups here? Sure. But on the whole one is lucky to call this place home. Remember, we’re less than 0.5% of the world’s population here.

#18 Penny Henny on 04.01.17 at 3:41 pm

It is often cited on this blog that the reason the US labour participation rate is continuing to drop because the Boomers are dropping out of the workforce (retiring). Why is our number still so high when our Boomer population is the same age?
-in jobs (72% of people age 15-64 have a job versus OECD average of 66%)-Ryan

#19 Bill on 04.01.17 at 3:49 pm

Provincial debt in Canada is roughly the same size as federal debt, is it not? Your debt arguments are disingenuous without including provincial debt numbers.

#20 Lee on 04.01.17 at 4:06 pm

All governments need to worry about is servicing debt. Should rates governments borrow at double that would eat up about only 15B more on 2T in federal spending yearly. The Feds and provincial government in Ontario and Toronto for that matter have eons of spending to go before we’re in trouble. Government workers need not worry about their pensions and salaries. It’s all good. If T2 adds $100B to the deficit its small potatoes. Some of you fear mongerers should read Zero Hedge. You’ll feel better.

#21 Smudgekin on 04.01.17 at 4:22 pm

Japan’s had the 2011 tsunami & Fukushima nuclear disaster to deal with. Canjun Fort Muck fire potato chips.

#22 Christopher Lackey on 04.01.17 at 4:30 pm

Amen brother. Thanks you for this post. Though I will point out that other countries figures likely do not include sub national (provincial) debt loads like ours which are significant and likely raise our ratio to be more in line with the others. For the rest it’s pretty clear that the country’s biggest problem is the drain caused by all the whiners who are all belly ache and no action. This life is the greatest gift we have and in canada it’s even better so let’s be grateful not smug about it and stop listening to the chicken littles.

#23 Rick on 04.01.17 at 4:35 pm

We’re not number one in Anything! Oh Canada:(

#24 Ryan Lewenza on 04.01.17 at 4:36 pm

Bill “Provincial debt in Canada is roughly the same size as federal debt, is it not? Your debt arguments are disingenuous without including provincial debt numbers.”

I’m comparing apples to apples. When people talk about government debt they are usually referring to Federal government debt. For example, everyone is always citing the $20 trillion in US government debt. This is Federal and does not include state and municipal debt. So to make a valid comparison to other countries we have to use federal debt so its an apples to apples comparison. – Ryan L

#25 Ryan Lewenza on 04.01.17 at 4:44 pm

Farnham Mohasseb “The last chart ranks Canada housing 2nd. Makes the rating very questionable considering Vancouver and Toronto, which majority of population lives are in a bubble and not even the top 1% base on income can buy anything.”

The housing factor in the index looks at 3 aspects – affordability, access to basic services like an indoor flushing toilet, and number of rooms per person. Yes affordability is low in Toronto in Vancouver, but less so in the rest of Canada. Also we take for granted things like having space and indoor plumbing and toilets. These are luxuries in many countries. So when looking at these three factors we score high. – Ryan L

#26 For those about to flop... on 04.01.17 at 4:45 pm

I ran this one a couple of days ago but it seems like a couple of the weekend crowd might like to see it.

This is what state debt looks like south of the border…

M42BC

https://howmuch.net

#27 Ibn al fazal on 04.01.17 at 4:46 pm

This is exactly the reason we will hit the wall with 100 miles per hour.
Feel god article with wrong factual information.
1. Federal + provincial debt +mortgage liabilities are probably ovr 80 % of gdp
2. Our oil is expensive. The venezuelian is cheap and just look at how poor that country is.
3. Good lyck in explaining to retirees how great thir life is.

#28 Ibn al fazal on 04.01.17 at 4:52 pm

There is no provibcial debt iin any other country, except US, even in US/california ebt per capita is 4-5 times less than ontario debt things must be pretty bad for this blog to start spreading fakse feel goid reputation damaging politicalky correct article

#29 For those about to flop... on 04.01.17 at 4:55 pm

This was my favourite part of the text.

Made me think of Joking Man…

M42BC

“In this part of the country, moving across the state line can make a big difference for the level of state debt. Want to set down roots on the shores of lovely Lake Tahoe? In South Lake Tahoe, on the Californian side, your per-capita share of state debt is $4,042. Across the state line, in the appropriately-named town of Stateline, Nevada, that amount is just $1,240. And you can smoke in the casinos.”

#30 not 1st on 04.01.17 at 5:01 pm

1. Regarding debt, its not the size, its what its spent on. The govt is always wasting it on stupid vote buying green schemes – look at Ontario. If debt is properly deployed, it can result in some phenomenal growth. Unfortunately our politicians blow it every time.

2. What good is trillions of bbl of oil if we cant get it anywhere. FN and envirowackos have got everything shut down and it shows Canada is not open to business. That oil probably stays in the ground now.

3. And yes Canada is a great place, but as Oleary puts it, we could be just an amazing place and eat the worlds lunch if we just get out of our own way and stop shooting ourselves in the face with stupid policy.

#31 Figure it out on 04.01.17 at 5:04 pm

New York, state and local debt to GDP: 23%
California, ditto: 17%

Ontario, ditto: 39%
Quebec, ditto: 47%

Nobody says you have to go through and work out substate figures for all the countries in your example, but if you know that some countries have a big propensity for substate debt…

N.B. No idea whether those US numbers include unfunded pension obligations, the Elephant in American state living rooms.

#32 Figure it out on 04.01.17 at 5:05 pm

… or whether the provincial ones inclode Hydro.

Oops, forgot to cite sources
http://www.rbc.com/economics/economic-reports/pdf/provincial-forecasts/prov_fiscal.pdf
http://www.usgovernmentdebt.us/state_debt_rank

#33 not 1st on 04.01.17 at 5:06 pm

Oleary pointed out that some provinces, (I am looking at you maritimes,) have elected to ban development of their own resources and rely on transfer payments.

Quebec has free IVF and daycare paid for by Alberta and chooses not to buy canadian oil.

We have a entitlement socialism disease in this country and until that is eradicated, expect us to be a economic laggard.

#34 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.01.17 at 5:06 pm

While I dont disagree that Canada is a great place to live….
Lets see how much money the Feds AND the Provinces urinate against the fiscal wall.

Canadian federal and provincial Debt
per person is aprox $35,000 per person.

35,000,000 people x 35k = 1,225,000,000,000.00

Canada’s 1.8 trillion GDP vs 1.225 trillion gross debt or 68% Debt to GDP is gross alright…..

As for Oil reserves.
Past production may not indicate future cash.
Venezuela’s socialist dictatorship has expropriated and squandered the largest oil reserves and its people are starving and rioting.
Also, how many oil firms have backed out of the hugely polluting Alberta oils sands in the last 3 years after investing billions? What do they know that we dont? Electric cars are on the rise? Investors and shareholder want greener energy?
The “#2 Housing ranking” may take a bit of a blood bath in the next few years……

#35 I'm Not Poloz on 04.01.17 at 5:08 pm

Sir Ryan Lewenza, if you haven’t read the insider report that Morneau’s political & economic advisor forecast a 62 cent Loonie within, and up to Q4 2018, you should change your outlook.

Poloz is concerned with exports & Morneau live in mansions at Bay view at exquisite upscale places where the trophy wives spend the entire monthly GDP of a poor country on the latest Birkin handbag (these pieces of leather go for several hundred $$ thousand $$$).

It doesn’t mater of Canada owns the 3rd largest proven oil reserves in the world. That oil money is funneling into Toronto where the bureaucrats want us tO work for free under a $0.50 Loonie, while we read obscene stories from the elite Globe & Mail Toronto newspapers about a female journalist who attempted to force herself on an infant boy to “breastfeed” him without his consent in a lonely, private room on private property.

Poloz already declared war on the Loonie if it ever goes about the psychological US$0.75 range.

Poloz wants us Canadians to work for free on a US$0.50 Loonie, while if we ever question why a female International student who was eligible for Work Study for Low Income students was able to purchase a luxurious mansion for over $30,000,000 in the wealthiest parts of Vancity, we are labelled as “racists”, “misogynists” sexist, etc.

But if a Canadian who worked for over 30 years of their life was laid off and was forced on the Ontario welfare system, he or she will be under scrutiny more than a Financial version of Guantanamo Bay. I’ve read complaints that the welfare system in Ontario is punitive, like any other bureaucratic agency on Ontario.

The point s that Poloz and Morneau don’t give a Belfountain General Store doughnut about us Canadians. They want us to work for free under a $0.50 Loonie.

#36 Tony on 04.01.17 at 5:09 pm

The real debt to GDP ratio in America is probably about 200 to 250 if we had access to the real GDP figures.

#37 rainclouds on 04.01.17 at 5:35 pm

# 114 wet coast

agree with your observations.also not a fan of NDP but. …

BC Libs (conservative party) are Lackeys to their financial masters. Led by a gadfly with no ethical compass or moral code.

The new buyers program was the last straw for me. Cynically duping young purchasers to buy RE, beyond their means, at this juncture, Funded by the TAXPAYER, reeks of pandering to the people who really run the show to keep the party going.

#38 Freedom First on 04.01.17 at 5:36 pm

To focus only on things that one can change will give you a winning attitude. To constantly focus on things that one cannot change will give you a whining attitude. Most people’s pain is in their way of thinking.

Cue the chorus of “but but but but

#1
Freedom First
Master of Freedomonics

#39 inflation tank on 04.01.17 at 5:47 pm

Finally some decent perspective on this Greatist of Countries… All the wing-nut collapse-commentators have sickened me to the nth degree… Look around and listen,,, the future of the world is Canada and the center of the universe is Toronto,,, period…

#40 Graphics Girl on 04.01.17 at 5:56 pm

Point #1
That’s like saying I’m in debt $100,000 but because my friends are in the hole $400,000, it’s ok. I can spend more!

#41 Ballingsford on 04.01.17 at 6:03 pm

Off topic, but what’s the difference between a financial advisor with an ‘o’ instead of an ‘e’, and a financial planner from the bank?

#42 Spaccone on 04.01.17 at 6:20 pm

I have no experience with government balance sheets, but I suspect that the far more robust (or “punitive”) pension regimes in Japan/Italy make comparing their Debt/GDP to countries with more lax systems grossly misleading. As misleading as just looking at their Debt to GDP as a red flag–the asset side to those pension liabilities is probably invested in a balanced portfolio ;-). How much Canadian capital (that would otherwise be individual pensions) is tied up in non-performing, overvalued residential real estate?

#43 Dan.t on 04.01.17 at 6:23 pm

Haha, was that an April fools day post! Canada is number 2 in housing affordability and apparently quality of life is awesome…ask anyone under 30 how life is in YVR or Toronto.

And how about personal debt in Canada, no biggie, just use credit card C to pay for credit card A and B… house “equity” that has already been tapped out, will cover it.

As long as rates don’t rise and people keep buying each others houses and condos and apartments at higher prices, we are all good.

#44 Ponzius Pilatus on 04.01.17 at 6:25 pm

Furthermore, studies in Sociology and Psychology should be mandatory for all FAs.

#45 Ponzius Pilatus on 04.01.17 at 6:38 pm

When you look at the chart too long, you will become the chart.
With apologies to Nietzsche

#46 common sense on 04.01.17 at 6:40 pm

#36 Freedom

Well said.

#47 acdel on 04.01.17 at 6:45 pm

#41 Dan.t

I agree but ask anybody over 30 as well, not so easy out there.
————————————————–
Good blog, I love this country, great place to live, safe, but what is not included in Ryan’s blog is all the user fees and municipal taxes that get rammed down our throats whether we like them or not, creates a big hole in each paycheque.

#48 Figure it out on 04.01.17 at 7:00 pm

#32 crowdedelevatorfartz — “Venezuela’s socialist dictatorship has expropriated and squandered the largest oil reserves and its people are starving and rioting.”

Maduro’s popularity is about even with Kathleen Wynne’s. “FACT,” as the kids say.

#49 Kelowna on 04.01.17 at 7:13 pm

Great post Ryan. Always nice to use facts rather that feelings when thinking about our great country!

#50 Jungle on 04.01.17 at 7:16 pm

Excellent post. Well done. Would like to know why we score so low on education? I didn’t think it would be that low. Also environment seems to be low as well?

#51 oopswediditagain on 04.01.17 at 7:25 pm

https://www.pressreader.com/canada/the-globe-and-mail-bc-edition/20170401/281487866192317

Really interesting article on Mortgage Investment Corporations. Kudos to Hawk at HHV for this one. I guess that it’s a coincidence that Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia are/were also the bubbliest provinces. Never mind the risky investment portfolios, let’s all ask why people are jumping all over high rate mortgages. Why are developers paying these higher interest rates?

“Official figures on the exact size of the mortgage-investment industry today are hard to come by, but it is estimated to be as high as $25billion.”

“But there was a tradeoff for borrowers. MICs and other similar firms often charged annual interest rates between 5 per cent and 15 per cent, which meant they provided expensive debt. ”

“Through his research, he learned that MICs operate on a similar model as U.S. banks that specialize in construction lending, rather than that of run-of-the-mill residential mortgage lenders.
This is troublesome, he argues, because construction loans are usually the first to show losses amid economic stress. “Construction lending is one of the riskiest loan categories,” Mr. Wessel warns. It is incredibly sensitive to economic changes, and future real estate developments or those under construction are the easiest to ice when things go bad – which is precisely what happened in 2006 when construction lenders ran into serious trouble before the U.S. housing market collapsed.”

“”In B.C., home to roughly two-thirds of the country’s MICs according to Fundamental Research’s analysis, anyone can invest in MICs and there are no restrictions on how much individuals can invest, beyond the limits that some funds set themselves.
B.C. is also the only province that doesn’t require MICs and other mortgage investment funds to register as investment or exempt market dealers. That means the companies and their employees are not subject to the same standards and oversight as others in the investment industry. Many are instead regulated as mortgage brokers, whose lobbyists have successfully pushed back against several attempts by provincial securities commissions to add another layer of regulation to their industry.
As recently as 2013, the province backed off moves to introduce new disclosure rules after a backlash from the industry.”

#52 CanadianOne on 04.01.17 at 7:32 pm

Hi Ryan,

Like the perspective (s)….. Is there any way you could enlighten us on your take on the state of affairs with regards to the economic diversity index and a similar ranking of Canada in that light?

#53 Nonplused on 04.01.17 at 7:35 pm

Canadians can certainly innovate! Look at all the taxes we have!

Any my contention on the innovation side is that we have been, as a nation, very innovative but normally in areas close to home. In 1950 nobody knew what to do with the tar sands. 20 years later they were being produced and fast forward to today and they are being reclaimed and forest and wild life are left behind, despite all the noise the protesters make. SAGD is another good example.

But it is a mistake to think we can “innovate” our way into leading global positions where we have stern competition from better positioned competitors. For example we are never going to build solar panels cheaper than the Chinese. We aren’t going to build better computers than Redmond and Silicon Valley.

In fact we even face hurdles deploying some of that technology. For example it’s never going to make for as good economics to put in solar panels in Grand Prairie as it does in Nevada. Wind power however we can do, we have lots of that. Just need to surround Ottawa with windmills and the energy crisis is solved.

As for electric cars, well don’t be counting on them making inroads so fast as many proponents would like us to believe. They face many hurdles including:

– Cost. These things are pretty expensive for something that only goes 100 miles before it needs a lengthy break to recharge. You need to bring $75,000 or so US if you want an S model (so about $100,000 CAD).

– Weight. A base model Tesla model S comes in at over 4600 lbs curb weight. That’s more than a Ford Explorer. More weight = more energy consumed. Sure it’s fast but it’s also heavy.

– Battery life. Tesla says the batteries will last 8 years, but 5 years is probably closer to the truth before the range starts to noticeably drop (same way as your cordless drill still works but doesn’t last as long as it used to.) Cost to replace? About $12,000 US. That’s enough to gas a Honda Civic about 100,000 km. Just for the battery, you still have to put the electricity in.

– Infrastructure requirements. To truly put an electric vehicle in every garage, we are going to need a lot more power. That means the grid has to be bigger, we need more power plants, and we need more fuel. This stuff is expensive, and currently it burns a lot of natural gas and coal.

– Efficiency. Contrary to public misconceptions electric cars are not more efficient than gas ones. Sure they are from the battery to the motor, but it’s getting that battery charged up that is the problem. Most electricity comes from natural gas and coal fired plants, the natural gas ones being the cheapest and most efficient. But they are still only 50% efficient at best, and that is the thermodynamic limit so don’t expect that number to go up. Then you have transmission losses, transformer losses, charging losses, etc. By the time the electrons are ready to go it’s not much better than a modern automobile and certainly not a hybrid.

– Lithium. A Tesla uses a lot of lithium in those batteries, and that stuff is relatively hard to find. To mass produce them, we are going to need a lot more from somewhere. That somewhere has not been identified as of yet. Sure it’s highly recyclable, but until everyone has an electric car with all the batteries we need more. A lot more. I’m sure more lithium will come to market as the price goes up, but there’s the crux. Supply and demand. Econ 101.

So when you see a forecast for electric vehicle market penetration, take the low case and divide it by 3. You’ll probably still be too high.

And no, we won’t be building them in Canada. I don’t even think we can build a diesel engine in Canada anymore.

#54 Moses and Bella on 04.01.17 at 7:44 pm

Number two in health . I have been waiting 2yrs5 months for a hip replacement. I call it friends and family first health care. If your buddies with a doctor or family member works in the health care field your good to go. That’s my only beef . Living with chronic pain gets to you after a while. Still the greatest country in the world.

#55 The Arctic Gringo: Qalunaaq on 04.01.17 at 7:47 pm

I guess the OECD survey missed a few people:
https://sencanada.ca/en/sencaplus/news/resolving-housing-problems-in-canadas-north/

Toilets and running water issues all over rural Canada – recall the First Nation community (currently) under a 30-year boil water advisory.

First world problems in the metropolitan areas of Canada, for sure. But remember millions of Canadians reside in rural and remote areas, and have varying perspectives of quality of life and would greatly influence the results of those indices.

Your northern neighbour,
M38NU

#56 Holy ___ Batman! on 04.01.17 at 7:50 pm

C’mon…what’s with the upbeat column? Maybe we should send a copy of it to our Ms. Ambrose…she never has anything good to say….( remember her Budget comment…Cananadian Joe will have to pay more for his BEER..Oh My…

#57 Sydneysider on 04.01.17 at 7:50 pm

I have lived and worked in several countries over the years on 4 continents. In every one of those countries, it was common to read/hear that “this is the best country in the world”, usually around the national day holiday.

#58 TLG on 04.01.17 at 7:59 pm

Are u teilin’ me that our debt to GDP is only a measly 38% ??? Holy crap man lets turn on the taps !!! We got lotsa room to blow this puppy right up !!! Zero interest rates for everyone !!! What are we waiting for ?

#59 binky barnes on 04.01.17 at 8:01 pm

Perhaps it would also be interesting to compare 2017 Canada with 1977 Canada, or 1967 Canada, or 1957 Canada. It might put things into clearer context, and methinks the 2017 picture wouldn’t be quite so rosy then.

If anybody out there thinks this country is in better shape than it was 40, 50 or 60 years ago they are delusional.

#60 Ryan Lewenza on 04.01.17 at 8:05 pm

Jungle “Excellent post. Well done. Would like to know why we score so low on education? I didn’t think it would be that low. Also environment seems to be low as well?”

We score well on literacy and math, and % of Canadians with upper secondary education but lower on the number of years of education at 16.4 years versus OECD average of 17.5 years. – Ryan L

#61 Don P on 04.01.17 at 8:21 pm

#29 Figure It Out

Also in Canada, unlike the US, municipal debt is guaranteed by the Provinces. The domino effect will be awesome.

#62 Jungle on 04.01.17 at 8:28 pm

Is there going to be a massive increase in tax revenue now that Marijauna will be legal and sold next year?

#63 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.01.17 at 8:29 pm

@#46 Figure it Out
“Maduro’s popularity is about even with Kathleen Wynne’s. “FACT,” as the kids say….”
*******************************************
No arguement about Wynne’s unpopularity from some of the comments over the past year here.
But , since I’m not from Ontario, I was refering (reefering?) to “baby Trudeau” and his infant socialism.

We’ll see what the next 12 months brings in international politics a la Trump, Putin , the South China Sea, Brexit, and “The 3rd Fatty” as the chinese refer to that crazy bastard Kim Il Jong in North Ko-razy.

Interesting times……….

#64 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.01.17 at 8:38 pm

@#49 oopswediditagain
“Many are instead regulated as mortgage brokers, whose lobbyists have successfully pushed back against several attempts by provincial securities commissions to add another layer of regulation to their industry…”

********************************************
Interesting info. Explains a lot.

The “Wild West” of Liberal campaign funding meets the poorly regulated real estate construction funders….
Hmmmm.
Is that why Bob Rennie is a major contributor to the BC Liberals this year? And last year. And the year before that………….

http://www.google.ca/url?url=http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/bob-rennie-to-step-down-as-bc-liberals-head-fundraiser/article33630956/&rct=j&frm=1&q=&esrc=s&sa=U&ved=0ahUKEwjow9L_w4TTAhUN3mMKHXtpDk0QFggaMAE&usg=AFQjCNFyebuNQ3AsDOKQhTSyxE4F-gh6Vw

#65 wallflower on 04.01.17 at 8:39 pm

data data data
http://www.visualcapitalist.com/nafta-mixed-track-record/

#66 Smoking Man on 04.01.17 at 9:33 pm

#58 Ryan Lewenza on 04.01.17 at 8:05 pm
Jungle “Excellent post. Well done. Would like to know why we score so low on education? I didn’t think it would be that low. Also environment seems to be low as well?”

We score well on literacy and math, and % of Canadians with upper secondary education but lower on the number of years of education at 16.4 years versus OECD average of 17.5 years. – Ryan L
…..

Dear God.

Ryan, please tell me you know the difference between scholing and education.

I’m planning on dropping a few bucks into a low risk diversified portfolio with you guys soon.

But if you think schooling = education I’ll take my chances with the casino.

#67 Dave on 04.01.17 at 9:41 pm

We are all Deplorables, according to someone.

If BC Deplorables fail to elect the Libs and go for the NDP the real estate implosion will be epic.

#68 RationalNational on 04.01.17 at 9:42 pm

Um, Ryan, Complain #1 – FAKE NEWS. If you are going to compare Canada to Japan, you need to realize that Japan’s debt ratio is all inclusive. For Canada, you need to add in the provinces – and when you do that our Debt-GDP is 66%. Now, as other posters have said, that does NOT include many NGOs such as Hydro QC, MB Hydro etc. meaning things are actually worse than that. Oh, and add in “hidden” unfunded liabilities such as pensions and well, you see where this goes. Canada’s total gov debt – GDP source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_public_debt

Garth, seriously, you do you validate the skills of these guest bloggers?

#69 Smoking Man on 04.01.17 at 9:54 pm

T2, RBC investing heavily into AI, Artificial Intelligence.

What an ego maniacs. Investing in themselves.

Why can’t globalists groupies see they are the
bug, not the windshield since a Nictonite desided to back Trump and burn a fellow Nictonite Shlong Zumanga. Zumanga has no morals just like the other too earthlings.

Never bet against a Smoking Man.

When am I wrong?

#70 Jay on 04.01.17 at 9:59 pm

I complain about #2 a lot, but my worry about the future of the economy has more to do with the amount of radical environmentalism and other issues of the day that the sheep get behind without any knowledge of the issue.
– Canada cannot develop the north or any land due to the possibility of hurting aboriginals or wildlife no matter how much consultation or study we do to avoid these “impacts”
– Canada cannot get pipelines built without fighting protesters and extreme interest groups every step of the way. Yes some are now approved but I wont get behind this until i see them finished.
– Companies are looking to invest elsewhere with governments that actually want to build their economy and don’t just pay lip service to it, then try to fight every developer / resource industry with regulations, taxes and other red tape.

For some reason everyone is up in arms about oil sands and pipelines but we have no issues supporting fossil fuel burning aircraft and vehicles produced in Ontario in factories that aren’t exactly using energy efficiently.

Sigh, hopefully this next generation will wake up one day with a sense of reason and possibly want a job soon.

#71 TurnerNation on 04.01.17 at 10:09 pm

Numbers means nothing when today’s generation is the most brainwashed since The Dark Ages.

An Apple product announcement is like manna from the Mount itself.

You either agree with our Techo Gods…or they boot you off Twitter. Person non grata.

That means no more Dopomine hits to your brain from Likes on social media.

I know someone who posted an Anti War rant on Facebook then had post wiped out by the Machine.

(War being most profitable business on the planet. It brings peace you see…..)

Back then you disagreed with the King or Church and it was banishment or worse. What’s changed?

#72 BillyBob on 04.01.17 at 10:14 pm

Hmmm. I appreciate the attempt to be positive. And certainly I do agree with Freedom First regarding attitude being much of the controlling factor as to one’s quality of life.

But I reflect on my own situation: forced to leave Canada to find meaningful, stable employment. After more than a decade outside the borders, earning large tax-free income, still have to choose between retiring, or owning a home in Canada in the city of my birth. Either/or. I contrast it to my parent’s generation, which I think is a pretty normal and reasonable thing to benchmark against. Stable, secure employment, affordable housing, good pension, and longevity in their location. Not having to constantly scramble for income gave them a beautiful, peaceful life. Unless you work for the government, this is a relic of the past (not just in Canada, of course).

In other words, I have had to make extreme personal sacrifices, by any standards, and do things my parents never had to. Yet, I will never enjoy the quality of life they have had. It’s just demographic timing – no one’s fault.

This is an observation, not a complaint. I didn’t sit around, I took action, and it’s been interesting, unusual, and in the end, lucrative. But as a trend it does put lie to the idea that things are “improving” generationally. The future does not belong to the West.

I am not quite so bullish on Canada as Ryan. It is a country with incomparable natural beauty, and certainly I could try and eke out a living there. I just don’t consider it good “value for money”. If I am to pay top dollar for something (taxes, housing), I expect the corresponding quality – my money has been exchanged for time and effort, I will not waste it. I have no patience with a smug, insular mindset as personified by JT Junior. And I do not subscribe to the Canadian mythology as perpetuated in the ad campaigns of Tim Hortons and cell companies and other various duopolies. I have pretty much written off returning to Canada, and will likely emigrate to a lower-cost locale. Canada will always be my birthplace, a pretty, overpriced place to visit. But I encourage anyone to explore beyond the borders, it’s a big, wide world out here, full of possibility.

I do wonder what my many nieces and nephews will do – they certainly cannot use those who have gone before them as a template. About all I can offer is general platitudes like “be adaptable”.

#73 soost on 04.01.17 at 10:15 pm

Ignoring sub-sovereign debt in a true confederacy – with some of the most decentralized spending in the world. tissk tissk

#74 Smoking Man on 04.01.17 at 10:16 pm

I’m sort of human. Disappointed.

Had a few teers at the end of August Rush. A movie that explains the UCC in a abstract way.

Universe is all about vibration, waves if you can dig it. Photons dancing.

Who ever wrote that flick or composed it.

I bow to your connection to the UCC.

#75 AK on 04.01.17 at 10:19 pm

#32 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.01.17 at 5:06 pm

“The “#2 Housing ranking” may take a bit of a blood bath in the next few years……”
——————————————————————–

It’s going to be worse that the 2008 U.S. debacle.

#76 TurnerNation on 04.01.17 at 10:21 pm

Numbers: Two parents working each full time jobs cannot afford mortgage and child care for 2-3 kids.
A de facto One Child policy.
Take everything our elites say flip it backwards: They ain’t femminists.

You’ve come a long way Baby?!

#77 NS Guy on 04.01.17 at 10:31 pm

Running a deficit and adding to debt makes sense if it is an investment in the future or a temporary blip to get through tough times.

Unfortunately, too many politicians in Canada (The Boy Wonder and his Limousine Liberals) are running up the debt, not for any specific reason, but because they don’t have a clue what they’re doing and are just throwing money at corporations in hopes they’ll not leave Canada and will hire more staff. Or they’re throwing money in an attempt to buy votes.

Basically, they don’t have any fiscal discipline. Throwing money at Bombardier is a perfect example (which in turn got mis-spent on excessive executive compensation without any strings attached).

A smart government would not make these blunders. Instead of throwing money at a problem, they would negotiate better terms for Canadians (like Trump is planning on doing).

Trump is an objectionable person in many ways, but he understands business, trade, negotiations, contracts, making deals. That’s why he’s so successful as a businessman. And he’s trying to apply those same skills and principles to the business of government.

On the other hand, the Boy Wonder and his limousine Liberals (except Morneau) have little business experience. How could they hand over hundreds of millions to Bombardier the way they did?

#78 Bottoms_Up on 04.01.17 at 10:31 pm

Yes. Thank you for the facts Ryan.

#79 acdel on 04.01.17 at 10:34 pm

#51 Nonplused

Great points!
——————————————-

I am all for clean water and cleaner air but people fail to understand that it will take a huge and I mean a “HUGE” investment to get there. How much more can one afford out of one’s paycheque? If we were to change within one year from fossil fuels to electric the whole system would collapse; I am all for it but I am also realistic.

Why are we so eager to have have electronics and robotics to take over our jobs, transition and mega bucks are the answer if we wish a future for the up and coming. I read a story the other day where a robot can lay 4000 bricks a day comparing to a human brick layer that can maybe do half; but how safe is it really??? Human mind created these things, meaning we are superior for now, but human greed will be its downfall for us, profits which is good to a point or not, (example Bombardier lay off thousands and the big shots increase their bonus’s and wages meanwhile getting Canadian tax payers to pay for it), or CIBC and all of the other chartered Banks outsourcing jobs and making the current employees train them before getting the boot, it just goes on and on, it’s wrong, welcome to the future, I guess all we can do is invest in robotics and hopefully make a living. Hey, life is good, right? :)

#80 NS Guy on 04.01.17 at 10:40 pm

During the 1990’s, Bob Rae’s NDP jacked up the provincial debt from about $35 billion to $90 billion.

It nearly triggered a debt crisis, resulted in shutting down of government services (Rae Days), and caused the real estate market to stay flat. It caused many companies to lay off, shut down and leave Canada.

Apparently, there was a secret delegation from Bob Rae’s office that went to New York and Europe in an attempt to sell them more Ont bonds. Basically, Bob Rae’s staff were desperately trying to get other countries/banks to buy Ontario bonds. They couldn’t sell all the bonds they needed so they were FORCED to curtail their spending.

So running up deficits and debt does have consequences. Just because your neighbour has way more debt than you do shouldn’t justify taking on more debt yourself.

#81 genbizx on 04.01.17 at 10:46 pm

we pat ourselves on the back too much…even in hockey..we under perform relative to number of players playing and number of rinks. small countries with very few players, far less rinks, produce many more TOP players per capita – sweden, finland,(10 times less registered players) czechs, russians (6 times less registered)

california is a better comparison for canada…we have a lower population and lower gdp by a trillion $

texas gdp is higher with a lower population.

new york state’s population is lower by about 15 million and has around the same gdp

it’s not that we don’t have our advantages and things to be proud of it’s that we don’t ever dare turn on the light and take an honest look at where we really are. we argue on this blog about real estate and nobody really has a clue what is actually going on because we don’t have any reliable stats and we don’t care. we want the fiction. we talk about great free healthcare but usually when we haven’t had a major illness. after that we have our eyes opened. anybody have a list of what isn’t covered by ohip here in ontario? of course not. because “we have free healthcare” , “have the best country in the world” is our propaganda.
i guess when you’re a 1%er you don’t feel the reduction in standard of living but that’s typical.
i do agree that having oil will help us. again, all the people starry eyed about alt energy just don’t know the numbers. we will need and use oil for many years to come because nothing can replace it for the foreseeable future…
ya we complain here but that doesn’t mean we don’t see the strengths of our country but the country is changing and in many ways, not for the good.

#82 NS Guy on 04.01.17 at 10:46 pm

No, I don’t like to complain.

It is the fundamental right of a citizen to offer an opinion on various topics like government policy, taxation, housing, the economy, trade, debt, whatever.

Especially when decisions are made by government or business that negatively affects a person’s life.

Despite being well-educated, hard working, industrious etc, I’ve endured many hardships due to excessive greed and selfishness by senior company execs and government decisions. I could give endless examples but don’t want to put my personal life online.

#83 NoName on 04.01.17 at 10:51 pm

#72 TurnerNation on 04.01.17 at 10:21 pm

Numbers: Two parents working each full time jobs cannot afford mortgage and child care for 2-3 kids.
A de facto One Child policy.
Take everything our elites say flip it backwards: They ain’t femminists.

You’ve come a long way Baby?!

—-

i was about to say something but better not to…

“In Toronto, infant costs average at $1,649 per month, which adds up to $19,788 a year (more than twice a university tuition). The surrounding suburbs of Markham and Vaughan are comparable at $1,454 and $1,363 per month respectively, while the lowest rates are found in Montreal and average $164 per month.”

“Spacing children is now a decision that parents face,” Macdonald says. “In Toronto, if you have an infant and a toddler, the median expense of childcare is $36,000 per year. The other thing to consider is to move. In Ontario, it can be a real issue when you consider that in Ottawa parents pay $1,000 per month while in Gatineau it’s $179 and it’s just across the river.”

http://globalnews.ca/news/3121563/child-care-costs-in-canada-the-most-and-least-expensive-cities/

#84 AB Boxster on 04.01.17 at 10:52 pm

It’s not a bad thing to look at life through the glass half full perspective.

But to paraphrase your argument:

1. Sure Canada has a huge debt problem, but many more countries are so much more indebted than us, that we look really good in comparison.
So while their indebtedness really sucks, ours only sorta sucks.
Something to be proud of, I suppose.

2.

#85 Al on 04.01.17 at 11:04 pm

Finally some positivity around here.

Namaste Influenza.

#86 AB Boxster on 04.01.17 at 11:11 pm

It’s not a bad thing to look at life through the glass half full perspective.

But to paraphrase your argument:

1. Sure Canada has a huge debt problem, but many more countries are so much more indebted than us, that we look really good in comparison.
So while their indebtedness really sucks, ours only sorta sucks.
Something to be proud of, I suppose.

2. Though Canada no longer has a manufacturing base to drive it’s economy, we do have ton of oil in the ground that will rescue our lousy economic growth rate once again. I’m sure oil and gas development will be hugely supported by Canadians.
I thought that our strenght was ‘resourcefullness’ and diversity and not something as mudane as resources.
Sounds so 1990’s and not 2017 like at all.

3. And again comparing to Canada’s quality of life today to other countries in the world, is a little simplistic.
There are those of us old enough to remember when house were affordable on 1 income, when health care was not a 6-12 month wait for appointments, and when paying for groceries for a family of 4 did not set you back 200+ per week, or graduating from university diploma did not require 40-50 k student debt.

True, we do now all own 36 pairs of shoes, have 4 colour TVs in the house, and can instantly google how to spell antidisestablishmentariansim.
Yaay.

It’s one thing to look at the state of the country with a glass half full view.

It’s another to look through rose colored glasses and realize that many things in this country have been severely mismanaged over the past 50 years, and that Canada may soon not be a very good place to live.

#87 Two-thirds on 04.01.17 at 11:15 pm

Ryan,

Though the charts and figures presented are factually correct, additional factors are required to contextualize all 3 measures. For starters:

1) Debt/GDP: yes, Canada’s *current* ratio is low, relative to other countries. However, on the numerator side, the impact of interest rates going forward must be considered. Are the costs of servicing Canada’s rising debt projected to go up or down? This belovedly pathetic blog seems to foresee rising interest rates on the horizon. On the denominator side, is GDP expected to grow or shrink? Considering trends in productivity (-), exports (?), innovation (-), and the rise of Canadian global companies (-), do you see a positive trend for GDP growth for the Great North? Also, what is the *ideal* level for the debt/GDP ratio? Knowing we are not as bad as others is okay, but knowing we are not exceeding our ideal level would be a stronger counterpoint to the economic pessimism of those few who care about facts and metrics.

2) On oil: yes, fossil fuels are anticipated to remain a vital component of the world’s economies, and Canada has remarkable reserves. Now, if the table shown is complemented by 2 additional tables, showing cost of production for each of those reserves and access to growing markets (demand), the picture is a lot more revealing. Demand growth will come from emerging economies, and Canada has negligible access to these markets. Also, oil sands costs (OPEX and CAPEX) exceed those of most other producers and it is unclear if they could ever be slashed enough to compete with frackers and middle eastern sweet light crude. Incidentally; how many of the countries listed on the (reserves) table are economies with strong prospects? The US leads the pack, and Russia may be recovering, but the rest? Not exactly an inspiring bunch!

True, Canada remains a much better place to live than the majority of the planet, and we should be grateful for this. What leads many Canadians to despair is the overall trend. The way the past 10 years have played out is not exactly inspiring: debt at all levels has exploded and what do we have to show for it? Besides, if the outlook is really better than our pathetic complaining might indicate, why is this not reflected in our currency? If the future is bright for Canada, should we not be loading up on maple now, instead of rebalancing portfolios to be overweight in USD? The USD/CAD chart over the past 5-10 years is not confidence-inspiring (for Canada), so what do you see changing that trend?

As always, your perspective is welcome and thanks for taking time to write on the weekend.

#88 Household Debt/GDP on 04.01.17 at 11:27 pm

Ryan, household debt/GDP is 98%; that seems excessive to me. No?

* Household debt ($2.029 trillion) / GDP ($2.068 trillion)

http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a26?lang=eng&id=3780122&p2=33

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/indi02a-eng.htm

#89 steve on 04.01.17 at 11:40 pm

“I’m comparing apples to apples.” – Ryan L

You are comparing apples to apples, if one of those apples is actually an orange….

#90 wallflower on 04.02.17 at 12:17 am

#68 BillyBob on 04.01.17 at 10:14 pm
Agree with the gist of your words. Recommending to my son and niece they build their lives outside of Canada. One has EU options and the other, as a millwright, will be globally employable. If they want to be low income and ride the fretful life, they can do okay with all the subsidies and credits now available. Stay.
We are over-regulated, on many levels, in Canada. Everything is no longer ‘politic’ if you will. So, go.

What I find most interesting are the comments from first-gen immigrants I talk to. They are not planning to stay either. They remit every penny that doesn’t pay their rent or food to their country of origin and intend to return. So, it is going to be an interesting Canada in 20 years. What percentage of immigrants remain versus return, and what is the emigration rate? I think the federal governing body is in for a steep shock.

#91 Fortune500 on 04.02.17 at 12:20 am

Yes, I believe if you are 55 plus in Canada, or if you have recently come to Canada from a country that doesn’t have similar levels of rights and freedoms, then Canada in 2017 is a great place to be. I do believe however, from living abroad and travelling extensively that younger Canadians who have grown up in the country may not have the same perspective, and for good reason.

Yes we should celebrate our achievements, but I worry that there is a very large swath of the population that has watched its quality of life deteriorate and that we ignore them at our own peril. We may not have the possibility of a Trump-presidency here, but I notice the passiveness of this group disappearing over time.

And telling them that they are lucky not to have been born in Yemen or Venezuela is likely not going to do the trick …

#92 Butcher on 04.02.17 at 12:22 am

My Vancouver Canucks are the source of my pain.
This year I will have to settle for BoA – Battle of Alberta

#93 Questions on 04.02.17 at 12:49 am

In trying to confirm the GDP and debt to GDP data you posted, there seems to be a wide variety of numbers thrown around the internet. I wonder why this data is so inconsistent, the definitions so varied. Not like looking up population. I know statscan has some work to do, but what’s up?

#94 Victor V on 04.02.17 at 1:21 am

CRA targets tax-avoiding merchants using Square payment system

https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/small-business/sb-money/cra-targets-tax-avoiding-merchants-using-square-payment-system/article34550669

#95 Entrepreneur on 04.02.17 at 1:23 am

When I see that graph on oil barrel reserves, I cringe. Changing the strata of the earth is not a good thing. As an old saying “who made you God” means “what makes you think that is alright to do” or similar.

It seems to me that our great leaders are more interested in fossil fuel than manufacturing jobs.

How can a person rise to middle class; how can middle class grow and expand. It doesn’t in this environment. The middle class is straggled by debt and their expanded dreams are gone.

Night

#96 apm on 04.02.17 at 1:39 am

Canada’s government is quite decentralized, some of our most expensive programs are paid for by the provinces (e.g. health, education). You can’t exclude provincial debt when comparing against other countries. Ontario has the highest sub-sovereign debt in the world.

#97 Nonplused on 04.02.17 at 2:09 am

#75 acdel

You touch on some good points. For example I don’t know if the self driving trucks the mines are investing in actually save any money when properly discounted. Sure now the truck can drive itself using GPS but how many millions did they spend to develop and implement that?

If and when I go to McDonald’s, which I seldom do unless short of time or after my son’s soccer game, I never use the touch screens because I find them slow and cumbersome. But they will fix that soon when I go skiing I almost always use the touch screens because they actually work quickly. McDonald’s is trying to give every option in the possible book on the touch screen, which makes it a much more complicated process that a Big Mac vs a Quarter Pounder. Now you have to choose if you want onions or pickles, what kind of sauce, etc, but for something easy like a lift ticket it works well. Interesting times ahead.

And the minimum wage is going to turn out to be a joke. No government has ever beaten market forces in the history of mankind. The higher they raise the minimum wage, the more machines, and the more people on welfare. They have tried this experiment before and always got the same result. They don’t learn. They can’t.

#98 For those about to flop... on 04.02.17 at 2:46 am

Pink Pollen falling in Vancouver.

These guys have decided to use the change in the month as a time to get serious about selling this house after being caught speculating on this place.

They spent 3.4m on this 91 build last March and just took 20% off ,putting them pretty much back to where they started after expenses.

All this in an environment of decline which saw the Westside of Vancouver sell a record low 95 houses for the month of March ,smashing the previous low of 135 set back in 2008 ,and we all know what was happening back then ,according to realtor Steve Saretsky.

Remember a recent stat that came out of my 2 month study to try and unearth what was really going on in Vancouver real estate…..30% of sellers that have reduced their sale prices purchased in the last 3 years.

That is a large number of motivated sellers which can only put downward pressure on prices.

Things might turn out alright for these guys,but they could have just gone to Playland in the summer if they wanted to go for a ride on a roller coaster…

M42BC

5830 Alma Street, Vancouver

Oct 15:$4,398,000
Apr 1: $3,500,000
Change: – $898,000 -20%

https://evaluebc.bcassessment.ca/Property.aspx?_oa=QTAwMDAwMFQ1WQ==

#99 Plus/Minus on 04.02.17 at 3:18 am

WHO healthcare ranking:

#30 in the World (the USA #37 – why Canadians should not be so smug about healthcare vs. the Americans).

Somebody asked why so low?

Expat in Italy (#2 in the World) and last July had a bad highway accident, got rear ended at high speed on a highway in Puglia near Gallipoli. Experience (late morning, fractured lumbar):

Ambulance ride like a Ferrari at Imola to the Gallipoli hospital. Got X-Ray’d, CAT Scanned, blood work and examined by emergency personnel – all done within the hour upon arrival. Just after, I was in an orthopedic wing hospital bed. The orthopedic surgeon visited me that afternoon and gave me the results of all tests. We discussed them and I was discharged 3 days later (he kept me there for observation, just in case, I left in a traction brace – and the food was good, hey, it’s Italy).

My parents, one in AB and the other in BC, many years ago I observed in emergency before their deaths were not treated nowhere as quickly as I was in Italy. My relatives tell me that Puglia is a poor region and their healthcare is not as good as it is in the NE where I live (N. of Venice).

Without your health, you cannot enjoy money and I feel safer in Italy as I age.

#100 Contrarian Coyote on 04.02.17 at 6:24 am

Question for anyone out there with knowledge of oil sands technology: how much innovation & improvement happened over the last 10~15 years in extraction technology?

I’m genuinely curious because I recognize that investment in the oil sands comes & goes in cycles and would like to know where we are at currently. Looking at that proven reserves chart above, Canada is literally sitting on top of so much potential for economic power & opportunity. Hopefully the tech & innovation comes back soon, I’m keeping an eye on returning to Calgary someday.

Wynntario doesn’t look like it’s got much of a future unless Brown & the Provincial Conservatives can put together a decent plan, win the election, and get this place turned around after the next election.

#101 Just saying it again on 04.02.17 at 7:39 am

Well with all the good news about Canada and its position in the world , future and quality of life, why the constant complaining by our hosts on this blog regarding over priced houses in the GTA ?

I would think that they are under priced based on your entry today Ryan.

#102 maxx on 04.02.17 at 7:46 am

“But we’re not as bad as Sammy” said the child, smiling sweetly, toes pointed inward. Trotting out comparative stats to justify not doing better?
One foot still stuck on the edge of the cliff is not a head of the class move for Canada. Other nations may take a relative flying debt leap, but that doesn’t make us shining examples of fiscal prudence. It just makes us sloooower copycats- but look at how well we’ve caught up with the US, circa 2007. Blink, blink.
Keeping up with the Joneses and FOMO is a game not just played by fools buying overpriced re.
Were Canada financing the accumulation of a behemoth sovereign wealth fund or acquiring solid sources of income externally, debt financing would be easier to accept. Instead, we’re taking on debt and selling off assets in the name of globalization.
Ontario is privatizing a major utility and essential service. Spectacular- ask Ontarians how they feel about their energy bills. Let’s get those viable taxpaying units to cough up via what they absolutely can’t do without. Let’s see….Ontarians actually paid for the utility, so let’s sell it off, use the cash for the monstrous sunshine list and pay off some interest on the debt. Sell off the crown jewels to accumulate even more debt.
We have not actually “recovered” from the GFC after having dropped rates to idiotic levels to prop up FIRE. These sectors have since been allowed to essentially hijack the economy. We now have a nation gorging on debt as are all levels of government seemingly because, well, everyone else is doing it. “You’re richer than you think”, don’t ya know.
No sale. You can parse your precious, hand-picked stats from here to oblivion, but increasing debt decade after decade simply supports a finance economy- it most certainly does not help the “complaining” middle class.
Canada ought really to compare itself to Canada.
Then and now.

And you can take your dressing down of the dogs and stuff that into your database.

#103 Bezengy on 04.02.17 at 8:12 am

Maybe the reason we complain is because some of us know socialist policies don’t work and our country is on a unsustainable path. Canadians can’t even afford to have a kid, how sustainable is that?

#104 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 8:17 am

CanadianOne “Like the perspective (s)….. Is there any way you could enlighten us on your take on the state of affairs with regards to the economic diversity index and a similar ranking of Canada in that light?”

That index is similar but more focused on economics and trade of countries versus the Better Life index which looks at a broad range of factors from health, education, environment etc. So it’s more specific to trade and production. – Ryan L

#105 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 8:23 am

The Arctic Gringo “I guess the OECD survey missed a few people:https://sencanada.ca/en/sencaplus/news/resolving-housing-problems-in-canadas-north/

Toilets and running water issues all over rural Canada – recall the First Nation community (currently) under a 30-year boil water advisory.”

Great point and this is shame that this still exists in 2017. Hopefully T2 may finally be able to start addressing these issues. The Better Life index looks at the overall country, but I completely agree with your point that this needs to be addressed. – Ryan L

#106 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 8:40 am

RationalNational “Um, Ryan, Complain #1 – FAKE NEWS. If you are going to compare Canada to Japan, you need to realize that Japan’s debt ratio is all inclusive. For Canada, you need to add in the provinces – and when you do that our Debt-GDP is 66%. Garth, seriously, you do you validate the skills of these guest bloggers?”

Um, your wrong and on many levels. First, there is a big difference between net and gross government debt, which is why I specifically noted I’m using net debt. When using gross debt, yes Canada increases significantly, and its closer to 90% versus the 66% you cited. But so does every other country with Japan rising from 127% net to 220% and US from 80% to over 100%. So even on gross debt Canada is still much lower than other G7 nations. Finally, this is Federal government debt which does not include state and municipal debt in US for example, and provincial and municipal debt here in Canada. So I’m just focusing on one specific Federal debt number that all economists and investors look at. From a market perspective, investors look at how much government debt is outstanding ($680 bln for Federal government debt) and the country’s GDP, which is why I used net debt. – Ryan L

#107 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 8:57 am

Household Debt/GDP “Ryan, household debt/GDP is 98%; that seems excessive to me. No?.”

Yes it’s very excessive which we talk about all the time on this blog. But I was focusing on government, specifically Federal, since I’m always reading complaints about how the high US, Canada and global debt is going to lead to economic calamity. As I tried to show and explain, sure we have debt as every nations does, but we have lower debt relative to GDP relative to other developed nations. – Ryan L

#108 pBrasseur on 04.02.17 at 8:58 am

Ryan who are you kidding?

Canada’s public debt is a bad as some of the worse in the world, more than 90% of GDP.

http://www.tradingeconomics.com/country-list/government-debt-to-gdp

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2186rank.html

(Of course you have to count the province since Canada is a very decentralized federation)

The US is a bit worse but only if you count intra-government debt to social security.

Either way Canadian taxpayers already pay more than Americans to service their public debts (just check federal + provincial/state budgets to check).

Yet Canadian households are far more indebted than Americans and the US did go through the popping of their housing bubble, in Canada that has yet to happen.

Not so bad you say? You are wrong sir, flat wrong.

#109 DoomandGloomer on 04.02.17 at 9:25 am

Yahhhhhhh……I hear what you’re saying, but………
everything still kinda sucks.

#110 Purrfect on 04.02.17 at 9:27 am

Re #63 Smoking Man
Ryan, please don’t take SM on as a client. Garth, Doug and yourself will be spending 90% of your time tending to that Drama Queen.

#111 Pillboy on 04.02.17 at 10:21 am

#52 Nonplused

Electric cars will be coming faster than you think. You only need to look at the nations in the world with the worst pollution to realize it. Those “hurdles” you mention are not really big issues.

– Cost -> the model 3 is coming. The Model S and X aims squarely at the luxury Saloon segment. Your average person isn’t buying a BMW 5 or 7 Series, Benz S-Class or Lexus LS which is what is cross-shopped with a Model S. The Model X is cross-shopped with X5, X6’s. Look at the statistics to see the decline in those sales. Fun Fact: Did you know that when Toyota first came out with the Prius their Lexus division took a serious hit in sales which scared the management?

– Infrastructure – the grid as it currently runs is not very efficient. With electric car and charging overnight, it removes all the peak and trough pattern we see today for energy production. The grid can run at peak efficiency, almost all the time. Adding energy storage into the mix to buffer it means as renewables are brought on-line, it makes the case against building more peak power plants.

– Weight -> I agree that the weight is heavy, but that is something that will get better as batteries improve. You also need to compare the cars in terms of drag co-efficients too though, you’ll find fully electric cars are designed to cut through the air since you don’t really need to suck air into a combustion chamber.

– Battery Life. Batteries fail because of poor thermal management. Consumer devices have failing batteries simply because it’s not a big deal to replace them. Do you know what powers satellites in space? Batteries, that are being charged by solar panels. Satellites stay up there for 15-20 years at a time, and I can guarantee you nobody goes up to replace those batteries. Your cordless drill fails because it is in the vendor’s interest not to introduce thermal management, because it’s easier to just replace it. Same case as with consumer grade electronics.

– Efficiency. Electric cars are more efficient well to wheel. Your power plant that’s powered by coal and feeding the electric grid is still more efficient than your car engine. At least with a power plant there’s heat capture loops to try and capture as much energy as possible. Burning gas in a car makes heat, sound, some kinetic energy. As the grid gets cleaned up, electric cars will only get cleaner. It is common knowledge that electric motors are highly efficient. Internal combustion engines are NOT, which is why you now see companies making turbine engines to charge batteries which in turn power electric motors. Did you know that even Diesel locomotives and cruise ships are powered by electric motors?

– Lithium. Lithium is NOT hard to find, what a serious piece of misinformation. Trust me, I dispense it as pills for medical purposes. Batteries can get recycled, but you can’t recycle any types of fossil fuels. If you wanted to make a natural resource claim you should have mentioned Cobalt instead, because the price of that has definitely gone parabolic. That’s mainly because the worlds biggest sources are in conflict regions (Republic of Congo), and conflict free sources are still being brought on-line.

That’s what I’ve learned in looking up the stats. Btw, electric cars are way more fun to drive. Think back to those Radio-Control cars we had as kids and how they zipped around so quickly. EV’s are the adult version.

#112 Smoking Man on 04.02.17 at 10:28 am

This happend to me. Be carful what you post on line.

https://youtu.be/pa8po_9anHU

Now I’m a full time gonzo writer because of my opinions and big fat typing thumbs.

When I re locate to Saint Marrtan this is were I will unleash Super Smoking Man.

Be careful what you type on line dogs. SJW are watching and will do anything to destroy you if you say something not in line with their cultust insanity.

#113 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.02.17 at 10:58 am

@#95 Plus/ Minus

I have a friend who has a similar medical emergency story in the south of France.
He’s retired. Went cycling on one of the “legs” of the last years Tour de France with friends. Crashed, broke his collar bone, arm, etc…
Ambulance to local hospital, english interpreter was provided, doctor, xrays, blood tests, etc.
A SECOND doctor was brought in to look at his xray so that the patient could have a second opinion….
He spent 3 days in a private room, excellent food, great service, helpful staff….nicer than his hotel……
Another friend was stung by a wasp in Scotland, allergic reaction, couldnt breathe, rushed to hospital, treated with excellent care. All good.
I guess thats why France and Britain’s Debt ( 87% and 81% respectively) is higher than Canada’s. They spent $h!tloads on their health system over the last decade.
But they are sliding back into a Canadian health system(wait times, delayed surgeries, aging populations, etc) as the national debts become worse

#114 crowdedelevatorfartz on 04.02.17 at 11:05 am

Well,
I guess that fact that so many commenters here are disturbed by Canada’s Debt is a good thing….
At least we’re not believing that increasing the national debt is good.
Especially when interest rates are at historic lows and only have one way to go….

#115 jay on 04.02.17 at 11:05 am

http://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/stats/Economy/GDP/Purchasing-power-parity-per-capita Canada doesn’t hold up so good on this chart.Gas in Vancouver this morning in the real world $1.42 L average .

#116 Ace Goodheart on 04.02.17 at 11:06 am

Person I know just sold their Alliston, Ontario home, that they purchased in 2015, for $350,000 more than they paid for it, in a bidding war that went $90,000 over asking…..

Alliston is about 45 min up the 400 North of Toronto. It’s a sleepy little place, tucked away down highway 89. It is famous for it’s Potato festival….

Yup it’s so bad….

#117 cs on 04.02.17 at 11:15 am

Private/personal debt is the concern. Governments can prolong public debt eg. Japan

#118 JimH on 04.02.17 at 11:42 am

#18 Penny Henny on 04.01.17 at 3:41 pm
“It is often cited on this blog that the reason the US labour participation rate is continuing to drop because the Boomers are dropping out of the workforce (retiring). Why is our number still so high when our Boomer population is the same age?”
================================
Penny, where are you getting your ‘facts’ here?
The Canadian Labor Force Participation Rate currently stands at 65.8 and has declined from ~67.75 in 2008.
The US Labor Force Participation Rate currently stands at 63 and has declined from ~66 in 2008.

“Labor Force Participation Rate in Canada averaged 65.72 percent from 1976 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 67.70 percent in September of 2003 and a record low of 61.40 percent in March of 1976.

Labor Force Participation Rate in the United States averaged 63 percent from 1950 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 67.30 percent in January of 2000 and a record low of 58.10 percent in December of 1954.”

http://www.tradingeconomics.com/canada/labor-force-participation-rate

The two rates do not appear to be all that disparate to me, either historically or currently.

#119 WUL on 04.02.17 at 11:57 am

#96 Contrarian Coyote on 04.02.17 at 6:24 am

Question for anyone out there with knowledge of oil sands technology: how much innovation & improvement happened over the last 10~15 years in extraction technology?
**********************

Lots and more everyday. For example they are now working on the injection of solvents (recoverable to a certain extent) in the thermal (non-mining) areas to cut down on natural gas used, water and steam used to get the sticky stuff flowing into the production wells.

Also, about 13 companies, all competitors, have thrown their lot together and freely share proprietary information. From CAPP website (lots of good info there albeit containing some fluff and puffery as you would expect from an industry association that a lot of the world has its sights set on):

“Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA) is an alliance of oil sands producers focused on accelerating the pace of improvement in environmental performance in Canada’s oil sands through collaborative action and innovation.

To date, COSIA member companies have shared 936 distinct technologies and innovations that cost almost $1.33 billion to develop.”

#120 jay on 04.02.17 at 12:17 pm

#115 Wul They’re working on injecting solvent into the ground to extract oil ,unbelievable , I’m sure that’ll work out good for the environment. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/oil-sands-development-polluting-alberta-lakes-study/article7014184/

#121 Penny Henny on 04.02.17 at 12:28 pm

Thanks Jimh

#122 Fish on 04.02.17 at 1:02 pm

RE#39 Ballingsford on 04.01.17 at 6:03 pm
Off topic, but what’s the difference between a financial advisor with an ‘o’ instead of an ‘e’, and a financial planner from the bank?

***********

I m not sure, but the word Realitor,

Has both an o and e in the word, if that helps you any

#123 joblo on 04.02.17 at 1:38 pm

“However, T2 and gang seemed to be waking up to this reality with the Federal Liberals committing over a $1 bln this year on skills and innovation and more down the road.”

And legalized WEED soon!

#124 A Reply to #89 Questions on 04.02.17 at 1:57 pm

I’m assuming your question is not rhetorical, and as Ryan has not yet replied I’ll do my best to answer.

(You almost need to be a national income accountant to figure this stuff out.)

GDP can be reported at either real or nominal market prices, so there should only be two possible figures “thrown around the Internet.” (See link below for the latest GDP figures.)

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/indi02a-eng.htm

Gross debt is the sum of interest-bearing debt, accounts payable, and accrued liabilities. Gross debt less financial assets is net debt. Net debt less non-financial assets is the federal debt (or accumulated deficit). (See “Table 15 — Gross and net debt” for a reconciliation of these figures by clicking the link below.)

https://www.fin.gc.ca/frt-trf/2016/frt-trf-16-eng.asp

You may have noticed that Tables 54 and 55 (above) provide an international comparison of gross and net debt, confirming that Ryan’s figures are correct.

The link below provides a narrative of federal debt (as of Mar. 31, 2016) together with Table 8 providing a complete debt reconciliation.

https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/report-rapport-eng.asp#_Toc12

#125 BMC on 04.02.17 at 2:05 pm

#7 Long time lurker
Japan’s economy has been in decline for two decades –since the 90’s. They’ve been firing fiscal & economic policy bullets at their problem for years to no avail.

To no avail because their economic decline is due to their aging and shrinking population –a demographic problem not monetary policy one.

The problem with Japan and other western countries with aging populations is that they are managing it backwards, they have made moves to keep older people working longer leaving younger educated people unemployed or underemployed

The solution? Instead of wasting billions on propping up stagnant economies, spend billions retiring the aging populations, open up the work force to the young, eager and ambitious, they in turn will buy homes, invest, have babies, basically recreate the post wwII boom that brought so much prosperity

With robotics technology, future workforces will be smaller, todays youth are better equipped to integrate with these new technologies than us old, “set in our ways” farts.

It`s time for governments to invest in the future by moving out the past, with a big investment in early retirement, it would create an investment boom across all age demographics.

#126 Original dave on 04.02.17 at 2:15 pm

Ryan, what’s your position on housing? We know Garth’s but rarely do we hear of the subject from you. Hey, some smart people are bullish (I am neither smart nor bullish). Would love to know your thoughts

#127 Contrarian Coyote on 04.02.17 at 2:16 pm

#115 WUL on 04.02.17 at 11:57 am

===

Thanks for the update. I had a few conditional job offers pulled/delayed back in 2014 and would really like to return to Calgary. Hopefully with the technological innovation, investment returns as well. I realize it will be nowhere near the peak, but I’m itching for that mountain air.

#128 Long-Time Lurker on 04.02.17 at 2:42 pm

#121 BMC on 04.02.17 at 2:05 pm

The problem with Japan and other western countries with aging populations is that they are managing it backwards, they have made moves to keep older people working longer leaving younger educated people unemployed or underemployed….

That’s an interesting theory. It might work. Some government wonk should run it through a model.

#129 Federal Net Debt Calculations on 04.02.17 at 4:31 pm

#19 Bill on 04.01.17 at 3:49 pm
#22 Christopher Lackey on 04.01.17 at 4:30 pm
#29 Figure it out on 04.01.17 at 5:04 pm
#32 crowdedelevator on 04.01.17 at 5:06 pm
#40 Spaccone on 04.01.17 at 6:20 pm
#64 RationalNational on 04.01.17 at 9:42 pm
#69 soost on 04.01.17 at 10:15 pm
#85 steve on 04.01.17 at 11:40 pm
#92 apm on 04.02.17 at 1:39 am
#104 pBrasseur on 04.02.17 at 8:58 am

Canada’s federal net debt reported on a Public Accounts basis can be found in “Table 8 — Outstanding Debt at Year-End” at the link at the bottom of this comment.

“International comparisons of net debt are made on a total government, National Accounts basis, which for Canada includes the net debt of federal, provincial/ territorial and local governments, as well as the net assets held in the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Québec Pension Plan (QPP).” (See “Table 9 —
IMF Measure of Total Government Net Debt on a National Accounts Basis” at the link below.)

Federal net debt must be restated from a Public Accounts basis to a National Accounts basis for comparative purposes. (See “Table 10 — Reconciliation of Federal Net Debt on a National Accounts and a Public Accounts Basis” at the following link.)

https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/report-rapport-eng.asp#

#130 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 7:28 pm

Original Dave “Ryan, what’s your position on housing? We know Garth’s but rarely do we hear of the subject from you. Hey, some smart people are bullish (I am neither smart nor bullish). Would love to know your thought

Dave I share the same concerns as Garth which I wrote about just a few weeks ago. Here’s my take on our housing market. – Ryan L

http://www.greaterfool.ca/2017/03/04/its-official-its-a-bubble/

#131 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 7:37 pm

Questions “In trying to confirm the GDP and debt to GDP data you posted, there seems to be a wide variety of numbers thrown around the internet. I wonder why this data is so inconsistent, the definitions so varied. Not like looking up population. I know statscan has some work to do, but what’s up?”

Currently Canada’s Federal debt outstanding is $680 ban with GDP of $2 tln, which equates to debt to GDP of 34%. The 38% referenced comes from the IMF and is a few years old. I used that one since the IMF has debt to GDP ratios for all countries using the same methodology so it compares apples to apples. Yes there are lots of different debt ratios which looks at different things and can be confusing. It’s taken me a long time to get a good handle of government debt figures. – Ryan L

#132 Ryan Lewenza on 04.02.17 at 7:49 pm

pBrasseur “Ryan who are you kidding? Canada’s public debt is a bad as some of the worse in the world, more than 90% of GDP. Not so bad you say? You are wrong sir, flat wrong.”

You’re referencing gross debt versus net debt. See #125 Federal Net Debt Calculations on 04.02.17 at 4:31 pm which supports my calculations. Again, outstanding Federal government debt is $680 bln, with GDP of roughly $2 tln, which is a net debt to GDP ratio in the 30s. You can go to Stats Canada site here to see I’m not “flat wrong”. – Ryan L
https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/report-rapport-eng.asp#

#133 steve on 04.02.17 at 11:12 pm

Ryan,

Of course the federal government loves to boast about the net debt ratio. Pension accounting is handled differently in most other countries, so isn’t apples to apples.

It also is considered an old way to calculate net debt. We usually include pension liabilities in net debt.

If we want to go by IMF data, then Gross Debt to GDP would be more accurate.

Either way, I enjoy the responses. Thanks!

#134 A Reply to #129 steve on 04.02.17 at 11:12 pm on 04.03.17 at 12:43 am

Sorry, Steve, but Ryan’s figures are correct.

“The primary differences between National Accounts federal net debt as published by the IMF and federal net debt on a Public Accounts basis relate to the Government’s liabilities for federal public sector pensions and other future benefits and the basis of measurement for total federal net debt. With respect to public sector pensions and other future benefits, these liabilities are excluded from the measurement of Canada’s net debt for international comparison purposes as the vast majority of advanced economies do not record such liabilities. [Table 10 at the following link] presents a reconciliation between the two measures of federal net debt.” (See also Tables 8 and 9.)

https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/report-rapport-eng.asp#

#135 James Kook on 04.03.17 at 1:43 am

Oops, I have just noticed what’s the date of this opus!

Happy April Fools Day…

P.S. Beware of Math…
I you average incomes of rich and poor,
then the poor may discover that they much richer than
they really are.

For instance, try calculate average for Trump and a hundred ordinary folks. The folks will be shocked how rich they are:-)

#136 pBrasseur on 04.03.17 at 5:48 am

@Ryan #128

You are speaking like an accountant!

As a taxpayer you pay the debts from all juristictions that collect taxes from you, and Canadians pay as much as anybody else, in fact more than Americans.

#137 Steve - Reply #130 on 04.03.17 at 12:40 pm

I’m not sure what your point is.

“With respect to public sector pensions and other future benefits, these liabilities are excluded from the measurement of Canada’s net debt for international comparison purposes as the vast majority of advanced economies do not record such liabilities.”

And different countries record pension ASSETS differently…

So it is silly to start looking at Net Debt figures on a country to country basis while considering pension assets… (And not even considering liabilities)…

Hence why it isn’t apples to apples…

#138 A Reply to #133 Steve - Reply #130 on 04.03.17 at 4:10 pm

“Net debt represents the total liabilities of the Government less its financial assets. Financial assets include cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivable, foreign exchange accounts, loans, investments and advances, and public sector pension assets.”

For greater clarity, net debt is net of public sector pension assets.

https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/index-eng.asp

“International comparisons of net debt are made on a total government, National Accounts basis, which for Canada includes the net debt of federal, provincial/ territorial and local governments, as well as the net assets held in the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Québec Pension Plan (QPP).” (See “Table 9 — IMF Measure of Total Government Net Debt on a National Accounts Basis” at the following link.)

https://www.fin.gc.ca/afr-rfa/2016/report-rapport-eng.asp#_Toc463249482

For international fiscal comparisons from 1980 to 2015, see “Table 54 — G7 general government net debt National Accounts basis (per cent of GDP)” and “Table 55 — G7 general government gross debt National Accounts basis (per cent of GDP)” at the following link.

https://www.fin.gc.ca/frt-trf/2016/frt-trf-1609-eng.asp#tbl54

All these figures support Ryan’s points.

#139 Steve on 04.03.17 at 6:16 pm

@136

Im not going to go back and forth with you anymore because you clearly can’t read…

Just read this…

http://business.financialpost.com/executive/c-suite/canadian-debt-levels-arent-as-they-appear

#140 Armando on 04.04.17 at 11:19 pm

No doubt Canada would be great – if it weren’t turning into a Socialist crap hole under T2!