A Money Coach in Canada

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OK, here’s a couple goodies in the Canadian Economy at large: 

  1.   Ever had a really great pie?  Chances are, the thick, fruity filling was from Canada’s E.D. Smith company.  Sometime back, they converted to an income fund, and which has now sold itself to an american company with the permission of the unitholders, of course.  Egads – Tim Hortons, then the Bay and now E.D. Smith.  What’s next, westjet?
  2.  Telus may stop pursuing Bell Canada.  I don’t know the full scoop yet – I think they both would have had to sell off their wireless components to satisfy competition regulations.

That’s the juice that I see in our Canadian Economy this Tuesday. 

The June 25 issue of MacLeans’s magazine asks the question, “why do we feel so poor, if everyone is working, the dollar is soaring, and Canada is booming”?   I imagine it will get a good readership:  enquiring minds want to know!  Especially those of us in greater vancouver who wonder what happened to our middle-class visions of homes, pets, and a good annual vacation.FACTOIDS:

  1.  Despite a strong dollar, we still pay $299 for the ipod nano that costs only $249 in the States.  Or $69 for Ikea’s Billy the Bookcase, while Billy’s american friends get him for only $49.
  2. A litre of gasoline costs 72% more than it did in 2002.
  3. Our total personal debt as a country is approaching 1 Trillian (not a typo), of which 2/3 of that is for our mortgages (I think my mtg may actually account for 20% of the trillian, truth be told).

MacLeans theorizes that this is due to our gains being realized in corporations, not on a personal level.  Furthermore, on the personal level, our costs are rising all over the place – real estate (hello), and gasoline (hello) and corn flakes. Corn Flakes?Well, as we go green, and turn to ethanol as a fuel alternative, that leaves less corn available for bread and corn flakes.  Ergo, our corn flakes price goes up too. It’s a fun read, and a great way to connect big picture economics to our personal wallets.  

The best laid plans … and yet, I’m still panicking as I pull together my receipts for my marvelous accountant. Does anyone with a business give CRA flawless records? Every last dime collected, dollar spent? I believe in paying taxes, and don’t typically gripe about it: I see all around me where our tax dollars are going. Still, this is not a fun process. At all.

ps:  does the fact that I stumbled on a map about tExAs  (and gdp) as I’m working on my tAxEs mean anything at all?

Econ 101. It’s not so hard! GDP means “gross domestic product”, or in other words, if we added up all the stuff we produce as a country, plus all the services we provide, put a dollar value on it all for the year, what would the total be? Well according to this map, Canada’s gdp was the same as Texas. Should we laugh, or cry?

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