Flaherty’s Christmas List — all Mixed Up

Following recent dismal reports on?rising unemployment,?stagnant GDP growth, and a?deteriorating economic outlook, we can only hope federal Finance minister Jim Flaherty will provide some Christmas cheer with changes “to better promote job creation and economic growth” (as he’s ?asked for advice on through his?pre-budget consultations). Unfortunately, Santa Flaherty seems to…
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Taxing Capital Gains

The following also appears in The Globe and Mail’s Economy Lab: Earlier this week, Kevin Milligan questioned proposals “to increase the tax on capital gains.” Currently, Canadian income tax applies to only 50 per cent of capital gains. Milligan argues that light personal taxation is justified for income that has…
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Modest Inflation Outstrips Wages and Canada Social Transfer

Statistics Canada reported today that the annual inflation rate remained 2.9% and the Bank of Canada’s core rate remained 2.1% in November. The monthly increase in consumer prices slowed to 0.1% in November from 0.3% in October. The monthly increase in core prices slowed to 0.1% in November from 0.2%…
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Conservative Health Transfers

During the federal election, I noted in a Toronto Star op-ed that the federal Conservative platform entails significant fiscal costs for provincial governments. I accepted the Conservatives’ promise to continue the 6% escalator for the Canada Health Transfer, but worried that they might cut other transfers of similar value. Today,…
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EI Coverage Falls Below 40%

It may be a grim Christmas for thousands of unemployed Canadians. Today’s Employment Insurance figures show that fewer workers received benefits in October, even as more became unemployed and filed EI claims. Specifically, the number of people receiving regular benefits declined from 546,580 in September to 541,230 in October. The…
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