Howdy! Geoffrey Morgan from Calgary here, bringing you up to speed on the morning’s top business stories. Oilsands companies are shaking off bankers’ decisions to stop funding them, while the markets can’t quite shake off the uncertainty of Ontario’s provincial election. Let’s dig in.
Clouds over Bay Street
Ontarians go to the polls today and, Geoff Zochodne reports, the uncertainty about the outcome of the election is having an effect on Bay Street. The two front runners in the election are the Progressive Conservatives and the NDP, with very different policies, while the long-ruling Liberals polling in third place.
“As per tradition, businesses are likely to view a tile to the right positively, particularly given years of the opposite tendency plus the promise of a corporate tax cut,” said RBC Global Asset Management chief economist Eric Lascelles of the PCs. He also cautioned much of the Conservatives platform was uncosted.
HSBC rethinking its oilsands investing policy?
In April, Europe’s largest bank HSBC announced it wouldn’t provide financial services for new oilsands projects or new pipelines connected to oilsands projects. But Suncor Energy Inc. president and CEO Steve Williams said this week that he bank is reconsidering the policy.
“I spoke to (HSBC CEO) John Flint personally and told him that what he was actually proposing is taking the environmental conversation backwards and that right now, the new technologies we’re introducing are reducing the carbon footprint,” Williams said.
Ottawa launching another spectrum auction
As the Canadian telecom industry fears the country isn’t moving fast enough to enable 5G networks across the country, Emily Jackson reports the federal government will soon auction off more space to do just that.
“This puts us in the Top Five in our international peers when it comes to the deployment of spectrum for 5G, ahead of countries like Australia and Germany,” Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains said.
5G networks are necessary for real-time applications like self-driving cars.
120 million cars now equipped with BlackBerry software
BlackBerry Ltd.’s technology may not be in as many pockets these days, but it is parked in millions of garages, writes the prolific Emily Jackson. The smartphone-turned-software company’s QNX software is used in 120 million cars on the road today.
“That figure has doubled as the world’s leading automakers, their tier one suppliers, and chip manufacturers have put their trust in BlackBerry,” the company’s top executive John Chen said in a statement touting the company’s success in the automotive sector.
“A family quarrel” ahead of G7 summit
As tensions rise ahead of the G7 summit on Friday, the top economic adviser to U.S. President Donald Trump has called tensions with Canada, France and others “a family quarrel.”
Larry Kudlow said countries like Canada shouldn’t blame Trump, who he called a “trade reformer.”
Canada has responded to U.S. tariffs on Canadian steel with retaliatory tariffs of its own on a range of industries and Prime Minsiter Justin Trudeau called the U.S. move to impose the tariffs in the first place as “insulting.” Trudeau and Trump are expected to have a face-to-face meeting at the summit.