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Finance Minister Jim Flaherty holds up a copy of a Harry Potter book while discussing price parity with the United States at a news conference following a meeting with Retail Council of Canada in Ottawa on Oct. 23, 2007.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty holds up a copy of a Harry Potter book while discussing price parity with the United States at a news conference following a meeting with Retail Council of Canada in Ottawa on Oct. 23, 2007.
(Tom Hanson/The Canadian Press)

Ottawa’s price-smackdown posturing is lousy policy

Ottawa’s continued windmill-tilting at Canada-U.S. consumer price disparities is not only odd politics, it’s bad policy. At a time when market forces are already depressing consumer prices to levels so low as to be problematic for Canada’s economic health, the idea of imposing new laws to close cross-border price gaps looks both needlessly heavy-handed and counter to the country’s broader best interests.