Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:
Canada’s inflation rate spikes to 7.7% in May, highest since 1983
Canadian inflation accelerated to the highest rate in nearly four decades in May as calls broaden for policy makers to find new ways of curbing runaway price growth.
The consumer price index (CPI) rose 7.7 per cent in May from a year earlier, up from April’s 6.8-per-cent pace, Statistics Canada said on Wednesday. It was the highest inflation rate since 1983 and part of a broader surge in prices that’s taken hold in advanced economies.
It’s unlikely to be the peak for inflation, either. Canadians are paying more for gasoline in June, putting more upward pressure on consumer price growth. Several financial analysts said Wednesday that the inflation rate could hit – or even exceed – 8 per cent in the near future.
- Bank of Canada says high inflation “keeping us up at night”
- BoC deputy governor Tim Lane to retire in September
- Powell says Fed “strongly committed” to bringing down inflation “expeditiously”
- Super savers are fighting rising grocery costs – and inflation – one deal at a time
- Explainer: What does inflation mean for the cost of living and everyday goods in Canada? Here’s what you need to know
Doctors Without Borders says Ukrainian cities Sieverodonetsk and Lysychansk too unsafe to work in
As Russia maintains its relentless siege of Sieverodonetsk and Lysychansk, the two Ukrainian cities have become too dangerous even for the front line medics of Doctors Without Borders.
The international humanitarian medical organization, also known as Médecins Sans Frontières or MSF, is famed for the bravery of its staff and their willingness to work in war zones around the world. But while the Nobel Peace Prize-winning group has several teams of doctors and ambulances on standby in the battle-scarred Donbas region of eastern Ukraine, it is no longer operating in the cities taking the heaviest Russian fire, reports The Globe’s Mark MacKinnon.
“We decided not to go there because of the situation. We cannot guarantee the security of our teams,” Andrea Carlini, MSF’s project coordinator for the Donbas region, told The Globe and Mail on Wednesday. “The possibility of being caught in a strike or shelling is too high for the added value we’d provide. We are not a suicide organization.”
- Zelensky calls on Canadian university students to pressure their leaders to further support Ukraine
Airlines to refund passengers facing lengthy delays, cancellations under new regulations
Airlines will soon be required to provide refunds or alternate flights to passengers whose trips are cancelled or delayed by three hours for reasons outside the control of the carriers.
The regulations announced on Wednesday by the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) are a response to the aviation industry’s collapse in the pandemic, in which thousands of flights were cancelled and customers were unable to get back their money, reports The Globe’s Eric Atkins.
The new rules, which go into effect on Sept. 8, are not retroactive. The change allows customers to choose between a refund or another flight that leaves within 48 hours on the airline in question or a partner airline at no additional cost. Large carriers are required to put customers on competitors’ planes.
Hockey Canada’s federal funding frozen in wake of handling of alleged sexual assault
Hockey Canada’s federal funding is being frozen in the wake of the national sport body’s handling of an alleged sexual assault and out-of-court settlement.
Sport Minister Pascale St-Onge said in a statement the organization’s funding will only be restored once it discloses the recommendations for improvement provided by a third-party law firm hired to investigate the alleged incident.
Hockey Canada must become signatories to the Office of the Integrity Commissioner, a new government agency with the power to independently investigate abuse complaints and sanction inappropriate behaviour.
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ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Ottawa’s Trans Mountain purchase no longer projected to be profitable, PBO says: Canada’s budget watchdog says Ottawa can no longer expect to turn a profit from the sale of the Trans Mountain pipeline because of construction delays and higher costs tied to its expansion.
Jan. 6 committee hearings to stretch into July as investigation of U.S. Capitol riot deepens: The House Jan. 6 panel’s inquiry into the Capitol attack plans to extend its hearings on former president Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election past the the original June end date as new evidence comes to light, including subpoenaed documentary film footage.
Government-in-exile calls out ASEAN for failing to establish peace: The National Unity Government of Myanmar took aim at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, saying the organization’s efforts to promote peace in the country since last year’s military coup have been a failure.
Whereabouts of fired Winnipeg scientists at centre of national-security investigation still unclear: It remains unclear if the two scientists fired a year and a half ago from Ottawa’s top-security infectious-disease laboratory are residing in China or Canada. The RCMP are investigating the couple for alleged high-level security breaches.
Wall Street’s main indexes ended little changed in choppy trading on Wednesday after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell spoke to the central bank’s aim to bring down inflation. In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 47.12 points at 30,483.13. The S&P 500 index was down 4.90 points at 3,759.89, and the Nasdaq composite was down 16.22 points at 11,053.08.
Canada’s main stock index fell on Wednesday as a drop in commodity prices weighed on resource shares and hotter-than-expected domestic inflation data fueled worries about aggressive interest rate hikes. The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index ended down 253.25 points, or 1.3 per cent, at 19,004.04.
The Canadian dollar traded for 77.27 cents US compared with 77.35 cents US on Tuesday.
I thought the Charter protected Canadians’ fundamental rights, but I was wrong
“Our Charter makes it perfectly legal to gut basic rights. There is no need for a coup, no need to politicize selection of judges, no need to gerrymander, no need to use a loophole. The potential for abuse is encoded into law. There is no other constitutional democracy that allows for the gutting of basic rights as a matter of governance.” - Sheema Khan
Why do almost 2,000 Canadians die each year on the roads? It’s no accident
“Crashes, and death, happen for reasons. One reason is that humans make mistakes, but the design of roads can ensure more and deadlier mistakes – such as when roads are built to encourage speed over safety. Once that’s accepted, and thinking shifts from an ‘accidents will happen’ mentality, what follows is obvious: Something can be done.” - Editorial
Hybrid work is here to stay. What will that mean for our downtown cores?
If you’re a white-collar worker, chances are your office setup looks different than it did before the pandemic, with a number of companies now offering hybrid workplaces. All that empty office space is going to have an effect on the rest of our cities. In the latest episode of City Space, Jennifer Barrett, a senior planner with the Canadian Urban Institute, outlines three ways that vacant offices could affect downtown cores and what she hopes will be the way forward. Plus, The Globe’s James Keller, deputy national editor for cities and real estate, joins the pod to tell us what Calgary – which has been dealing with a vacant-office crisis since before the pandemic – is doing.
TODAY’S LONG READ
From startup to big bank: BMO bought their company. Now they run its global trading desks
Like many American bankers, Dan Goldman and Levent Kahraman are back working most days of the week at the New York offices where they run Bank of Montreal’s global markets business, now that COVID-19 lockdowns have lifted. What may be more surprising is that they still have offices at BMO at all.
Mr. Goldman and Mr. Kahraman joined the Canadian bank in 2018 when it acquired their eight-year old broker-dealer startup, KGS-Alpha Capital Markets LP. After the businesses merged, the two men could have cashed out and moved on. They had worked side by side for much of their earlier careers, first at Salomon Brothers and then at Citibank, and selling their company no doubt came with a windfall.
Instead, they stayed and rose through the ranks of BMO’s capital markets division. First, they ran the global fixed-income, currencies and commodities desk. Then they were named co-heads of global markets last October, when previous head Deland Kamanga was tapped to run BMO’s wealth management division. Read the full story by James Bradshaw.