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Newsletter. Issue 2008-22. October 25, 2008

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Newsline Canada

Canada Heads For Recession
Oct 17, 2008

MONTREAL - The Canadian economy is headed for a recession that will nevertheless not be as severe as in the United States, the chief economist of BMO Capital Markets said on Thursday.

In a brief commentary on the global financial crisis, Sherry Cooper said falling stock markets, a slowdown in housing markets, and falling international demand for commodities would all take their toll.

'The boom has turned to bust,' she wrote.

'Canada, too, is headed for recession... We are not immune to the global difficulties, and the sooner we realise that and take action to mitigate the domestic damage, the better.' In Canada's favour, she said, are a 'very sound banking system and far more prudent households.'

'Our recession will be milder than in the United States and other countries with housing bubbles, but we should expect challenges through much of 2009.'

BMO, the corporate parent of Bank of Montreal, is the second Canadian bank in as many weeks to forecast a recession, after ScotiaBank issued its warning early last week ahead of Tuesday's general election which returned a Conservative minority government. BMO estimates that, after growing 1.7 per cent in the third quarter, the Canadian economy would contract 0.7 per cent in the fourth quarter and 0.5 per cent in the first three months of 2009.

Other major Canadian banks and financial institutions, such as the Royal Bank of Canada and TD Bank, as well as the International Monetary Fund and Conference Board of Canada, maintain that the nation will avoid recession.

Looking south of the border, BMO said the US economy shifted into recession in the third quarter, contracting 0.8 per cent, with drops of 1.8 per cent and 0.6 per cent forecast for the fourth quarter and the first quarter of the new year respectively. ? AFP


Bank Of Canada Warns Of Slumping Economy, Cuts Interest Rate One-Quarter Point
By Julian Beltrame, The Canadian Press
Excerpts from:

OTTAWA - The Bank of Canada trimmed its trend setting interest rate by a quarter percentage point Tuesday, saying Canada needs the stimulus to ward off the headwinds from a global recession.

The reduction, following a surprise 50 basis point reduction two weeks ago, drops the overnight interest rate to 2.25 per cent, a hair above the record low two per cent level reached in 2004. But the bank's failure to chop by at least half-a-point left economists disappointed given the gloomy prospects for the Canadian economy.

"The entire statement was written in a remarkably dovish way as if to justify a 50-or 75-point cut and they fell short on execution," said Scotia Capital economist Derek Holt.

"I think they should have stepped more firmly in front of the problems ahead and cut more aggressively."

With the economy sharply slowing, Canada's central bank did hint that it may have to cut further at the next scheduled announcement in December. Bank governor Mark Carney characterized the headwinds hitting Canada from deteriorating global conditions as "profound" and now projects the economy will only advance 0.6 per cent this year and by the same amount in 2009.

That's as close to a recession as possible without actually falling into one and sharply lower than the bank's July forecast, which was for a one per cent advance this year and relatively robust 2.3 per cent growth in 2009.

The central bank now says Canada won't emerge from the malaise until 2010, when it predicts growth will rebound to 3.4 per cent. "The weaker outlook for global demand will increase the drag on the Canadian economy coming from exports," the bank stated.

"Lower commodity prices will also dampen the outlook, working through a deterioration in Canada's terms of trade to moderate domestic demand growth." As well, the bank said "tightening in Canadian credit conditions in recent weeks will restrain business and housing investment."


Obama: 'change is coming'
Oct 19, 2008

MISSOURI - DEMOCRAT Barack Obama said on Saturday the winds of change were blowing across America as he roused monster crowds totaling more than 175,000 in the Republican 'red' state of Missouri.

Republican John McCain, fighting a rearguard offensive before the Nov 4 presidential election, insisted that Mr Obama's economic plan would 'kill' job creation as the United States weathers its worst financial crisis in decades. 'At least in Europe, the Socialist leaders who so admire my opponent are upfront about their objectives,' he said in his weekly radio address. But the Democrat, who is riding high in national and state polls, said Mr McCain was positing false arguments including via automated 'robo-calls' to voters that portray Mr Obama as a secret radical bent on subverting democracy.

Missouri voted for Republican President George W. Bush in both the last two elections, but Mr Obama said 'the winds are blowing for change across America' as he campaigned in the state metropolises of St Louis and Kansas City. 'They're blowing in Kansas, they're blowing in Missouri, they're blowing in North Carolina, they're blowing in Virginia, they're blowing in Ohio,' he said, reeling off a list of states that all backed Mr Bush in 2004 and 2000.

Police said the crowd in St Louis numbered at least 100,000 - Mr Obama's biggest yet in the United States, second overall only to the 200,000 who saw him speak in Berlin in July. The Kansas City crowd was more than 75,000. The gigantic attendance numbers were testimony to Mr Obama's oratorical pulling power and boded well for his flipping a state, Missouri, from red to Democratic 'blue.'

At rallies in North Carolina and Virginia, two other red states now very much in play, Mr McCain once again invoked Ohio plumber Samuel 'Joe' Wurzelbacher, a new hero of conservatives after challenging Mr Obama on taxes.


Peel Police - Police Make Arrests in Street Racing Fatal Collision
October 15, 2008

Photo from Mississauga News

Mississauga ? Officers from the Peel Regional Police Major Collision Bureau have made three arrests in the investigation into a fatal collision, alleged to have been caused by a street race.

On Monday, September 29, 2008, at approximately 11:00 p.m., the Major Collision Bureau commenced an investigation into a single motor vehicle collision. The collision resulted in the death of 20 year-old Mississauga resident, Darren D?SOUZA.

The collision occurred on Argentia Road, north of Derry Road, in Mississauga. Investigators allege that Mr. D?SOUZA?s vehicle was involved in a street race, and that it was a causal factor in his death.

As a result of the investigation, the following individuals have been arrested and charged:

  • Nigel D?SOUZA (no relation to the victim), 19 years old of Mississauga.

  • Simeon REMEDIOS, 20 years old of Mississauga.

  • A 16 year old male from Mississauga.

All three accused have been charged with Causing Death by Criminal Negligence while Street Racing. Simeon REMEDIOS was also charged with Failing to Stop at the Scene of an Accident, Causing Death. All three attended the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton on October 7, 2008. Nigel D?SOUZA remains in custody, while Simeon REMEDIOS is scheduled to make a court appearance on November 17, 2008. The youth is scheduled to make a court appearance on November 3, 2008.

?The protection of people in our community? is one of the core values of the Peel Regional Police. It should be stressed that road safety is a shared responsibility, and that poor decisions made while operating a motor vehicle may have severe consequences.


Britain To Limit Immigration: Minister

LONDON (AFP) ? Britain will impose tougher restrictions on immigration as the global financial crisis lifts unemployment to the highest rate in nearly a decade, the country's new immigration minister said Saturday.

"If people are being made unemployed, the question of immigration becomes extremely thorny," Phil Woolas told The Times newspaper. "It's been too easy to get into this country in the past and it's going to get harder," he added in an interview. In a dramatic change of policy, the Labour government intends placing a limit on immigration, according to the daily. "There has to be a balance between the number of people coming in and the number of people leaving," said Woolas.

The minister said his government would not allow Britain's population to grow to 70 million people. Britain's population grew by about 3.4 percent to almost 61 million people between 2001 and 2007 fuelled by expansion of the European Union, according to latest figures from the Office for National Statistics. Reacting to the comments made by Woolas, the opposition Conservative Party's spokesman on immigration, Dominic Grieve, said: "We have been calling for immigration limits for years now but the government have repeatedly poured scorn on this.

"But tough talk is simply not enough; they must now explain how they intend to deliver. Will they implement our plans for an annual limit on non-EU immigration, transitional controls on future EU immigration, and establish a dedicated UK border force to secure our borders?" Britain's unemployment rate jumped to an eight-year high of 5.7 percent in the three months to August, official data showed on Wednesday.

Under the International Labour Organisation measure of unemployment, the rate had stood at 5.2 percent for the three months to May. The 5.7-percent unemployment rate was the highest since the three months to March, 2000.


Business Visitors To UK To Face Strict New Rules  OpenDocument
H S Rao

London, Oct 16(PTI) Britain today announced strict new rules for the business visitors to the country. Under the new rules, those wishing to come to UK on business for up to six months must apply for a dedicated new Business Visa and prove they will be engaged in certain business related activities like attending meetings or conferences. The visitors have to prove that they would be arranging deals, negotiating or signing trade agreement or contracts, undertaking fact-finding missions, checking details or goods and conducting site visits and promotional activities.

In June, new visa routes for business, tourist and family visitors were announced in a shake-up of Britain's short-term visa system. The new Statement of Intent published today sets out in more detail how the new business visa will work. Border and Immigration Minister Phil Woolas said, "Now we are introducing an Australian-style points system for selective migration, it makes sense to tighten visit visas at the same time.

"These changes will help create a fairer Britain with fair treatment for those who play by the rules, but tough action against those who break the law.

"We want the UK to stay open and attractive to both business and visitors. At the same time we are determined to deliver a system of border security which is among the most secure in the world," Woolas said. PTI

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