Good morning, folks! Shari Kulha here with the stories you should have knowledge of before heading for the office coffee machine. With just a few minutes’ investment now, you’ll enjoy a good return on the café comaraderie.
Peter Munk, the entrepreneur with the Midas touch, has died at age 90. Known for his philanthropy, his early life in Canada was a proving ground. From picking tobacco to selling Christmas trees and manufacturing record players, he would go on to build Barrick, which became the largest gold mining company in the world.
Quote: “You only come up with a hare-brained scheme like (superyacht marina Porto Montenegro) at age 80 if you just love, love, love starting businesses,” his daughter Nina said.
After Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan said the city will appeal a lower court ruling that allows for Kinder Morgan Canada to bypass local bylaws during pipeline construction, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley said the decision is showboating. She doesn’t think the city has any hope of stopping the pipeline expansion in the courts.
Quote: “I think (B.C. Premier John Horgan’s) idea is … to make investors uncertain but … investors have good lawyers too and they understand when they’re real legal challenges” and when they aren’t.
A GREAT ONE, TOO?
Many thought Blackberry was a writeoff when John Chen took the reins in 2013, but he salvaged its software business and went after its QNX division and thousands of patents as growth drivers. Emily Jackson reports that Chen’s strategy is starting to work. The CEO knew it was risky to try to fix BlackBerry; a wrong move could kill his reputation as a turnaround specialist.
Misquote: BlackBerry’s stock price has doubled since Chen took over. How? He says he likes to “get to the puck before the puck gets there.” The guy who said something like that first was quite a winner, so, hey.
Ontario’s election-year budget yesterday offered more than $900 million in financial support for businesses and job training. Premier Kathleen Wynne called for $20.3 billion in new spending over three years, Geoff Zochodne reports. Some $63 million will create the Ontario Training Bank for people to access skills training, and $170 million over three years will go into a new apprenticeship strategy. Two R&D tax credits for businesses will share $235 million over three years.
Bottom line: The provincial Liberals project a $6.7-billion shortfall for 2018-19 after an estimated $642-million surplus for 2017-18. They don’t expect a balanced budget to resurface until 2024-25.
FORD v. FEDS
Doug Ford is about to change climate change policy for the country, economics professor Ross McKitrick writes. As with many politicians, Ford is opposed to carbon taxes, but what really makes him different is his willingness to say he sees climate change as secondary to basic bread-and-butter economic priorities. This commentary really captured our readers’ attention, so it’s well worth a read.
Quote: “The provinces are within their rights to tell the feds that if they want a carbon tax, they will have to impose it themselves and face the political consequences, not make the provinces do it for them.”