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Ottawa to unveil final list of retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods tomorrow

Federal ministers will announce the final list of Canadian retaliatory tariffs against American goods at joint announcements at a steel mill in Ontario and an aluminum plant in Quebec tomorrow at 12:30 p.m.

The ministers will also be announcing a financial aid package for the industries affected by the U.S. tariffs, a government official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity. Finance Minister Bill Morneau suggested earlier in the week that such measures were on the way.

Last month, the U.S. government announced that the United States would slap tariffs of 25 per cent on Canadian steel and 10 per cent on Canadian aluminum after the Trump administration removed an exemption sparing Canada and the European Union from global measures first announced earlier this year.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded that Canada would reply to the American measures by slapping levies on $16.6-billion of U.S. imports starting July 1.

Canada’s proposed target list of American products included U.S. steel and aluminum as well a slew of goods from sailboats to whisky, plywood to refrigerators, and washing machines to herbicides.

Lafarge under investigation in France over allegations of terrorist financing

A panel of magistrates in France has put cement giant LafargeHolcim under formal investigation over allegations of terrorist financing, violating international sanctions and committing crimes against humanity.

At the centre of the case is allegations that Lafarge paid the Islamic State and other terrorist groups in Syria more than US$15-million from 2011 to 2015 for supplies and assurances they wouldn’t attack the company’s new plant near Raqqa.

The legal move today is a key step toward criminal charges. It marks the first time a western company has faced possible sanctions for crimes against humanity. And it comes after eight former Lafarge executives, including two former CEOs, have been put under formal investigation over allegations of terrorist financing. Several company directors, including Canadian billionaire Paul Desmarais Jr., have also been questioned by police and reports in France indicate that the FBI has also launched an investigation.

U.S. Supreme Court set to swing to the right

The U.S. Supreme Court is set for a rightward swing that could lead to sweeping changes to some of the most explosive culture-war issues roiling the country: a roll-back or abolition of abortion rights, the expansion of the death penalty and limits to programs that help minorities attend university.

Yesterday, Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his plans to retire. In a court with four liberal judges and four conservatives, Justice Kennedy, a moderate right-winger, often cast the deciding vote in some of the country’s most contentious cases. President Donald Trump is expected to nominate a more conservative replacement, giving the right a five-four majority.

“On the hustings, Mr. Trump could well gain momentum,” Lawrence Martin writes. “Nothing gets the right-wing base more fired up than an abortion-rights fight or the prospect of a new hardliner for the Supreme Court.”

Enbridge Line 3 inches closer to fruition as Minnesota regulators signal support

Enbridge saw its shares rise more than 3 per cent today after Minnesota regulators said the company had demonstrated a need for its Line 3 oil pipeline expansion, inching the contentious project closer to fruition.

Minnesota’s Public Utilities Commission is weighing whether to approve the project, the final regulatory hurdle Enbridge needs to finish construction of the Alberta-to-Wisconsin line.

Commissioners appeared set to approve the project with conditions, although no formal decision had been made and they had yet to discuss routing options. Here’s a look at the key issues.

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Canada’s main stock index finished the day down 51 points at 16,179. Energy stocks fell 0.7 per cents, while materials stocks declined 0.8 per cent. Health care stocks, propelled by marijuana producers, rose 4.2 per cents.

On Wall Street, The Dow rose 98 points to close at 24,216, the S&P gained 16 points to close at 2,716 and the Nasdaq added 58 points to close at 7,503. U.S. stocks were up as technology rebounded from losses caused by uncertainty concerning America’s strategy toward Chinese trade. Shares in drugstore chains and drug distributors fell after Amazon said it would buy online pharmacy PillPack. U.S. oil prices rose to a 3.5-year high, bolstered by supply concerns due to U.S. sanctions that could cause a large drop in crude exports from Iran.

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Have you seen the chart of tariff rates circulating on Facebook and Twitter by supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump, suggesting Canada is gouging the United States? Under the North American free-trade agreement, it says, Canada charges levies of 45 per cent on aluminum, HVAC equipment and televisions; 35 per cent on vacuums and cable boxes; 25 per cent on cars and steel; and 48 per cent on copper. The highest U.S. rate for any of these items, by contrast, is listed at just 5 per cent. One problem: Every Canadian number on the chart is false. Under NAFTA, the tariff Canada charges the United States for every item listed is zero. The origin of the fake tariff chart is not clear. It first cropped up on social media in the days after the Group of Seven summit in Quebec, when Trump called Prime Minister Justin Trudeau “dishonest and weak” for complaining about the President’s metals tariffs. (subscribers)


Why is the World Cup TV coverage so sexist?

“What is a firing offence in the workplace is practised, without words being spoken, in TV coverage of soccer’s world championship. No words need to be spoken. It’s ogling; it’s the sexualizing of women fans with a sharp undercurrent of misogyny.” – John Doyle

How much do the Ontario Liberals have to apologize for?

“Hindsight reduced Mike Harris’s PCs to meanness and Bob Rae’s New Democrats to incompetence; the Tories just managed to get past that, the New Democrats still haven’t. Now, the Liberals get to be saddled with duplicitousness and disconnect. Circumstances might make those labels especially hard to shake.” – Adam Radwanski

B.C. became a gangster’s paradise. Who will take the blame?

“That is one of the most frustrating aspects of this [money-laundering] investigation by Mr. German: It is a fact-finding mission, not a fault-finding one. That’s a shame, because what becomes evident as you read the document is the systemic failure by people in senior positions of responsibility to do their jobs. That includes people inside the B.C. Lottery Corp., people inside government bodies charged with monitoring criminal activity, and those around the provincial cabinet table at the time. Many of these people still hold their same positions. They shouldn’t.” – Gary Mason


Most people who want a firmer, flatter midsection typically focus on their abs, says David Turnbull, owner of TurnFit Personal Training in Vancouver. Instead, he recommends working the obliques, the muscles on the sides of your body just above the hips, with three exercises that also strengthen your core and improve your strength and stability. Suitcase walk: Hold a dumbbell in one hand and walk for 30 seconds for each side, keeping your hips and shoulders aligned and your shoulders level. Side bend: Hold a dumbbell in one hand and, keeping your other arm at the side of your body, bend to the side. Cable wood chop: Stand 90 degrees to a cable machine and take a rope fixed to the cable and pull down, rotating all the way across your body – as if, you were chopping wood. Do many reps for all three exercises, as much as 15 or 20, Turnbull says.


He says he’s getting ready to leave for good, but will Telus CEO Darren Entwistle ever let go?

To build Canada’s third national carrier, Entwistle had to make some stomach-churning gambles, win over a once-hostile employee base, execute a winning strategy and make some heartwrenching personal sacrifices. So maybe he’s earned the right to think of Telus as his creation, Christine Dobby writes. And as long as he’s at the helm, perhaps it doesn’t matter that he has trained his senior executives to let him make the tough decisions or that he has an enviable amount of autonomy, thanks to a very friendly board. But what about when he leaves? That could be a problem. After all, when he tried to give up the reins in 2014 it didn’t go well – leading to an astonishing reversal that shocked Canada’s cozy telecom sector to its core. (for subscribers)

Loss of Arctic archeological sites a ‘catastrophe,’ experts say

For thousands of years, the Arctic has functioned as a time capsule where evidence of past cultures and environments has remained remarkably well-preserved. But archeologists are discovering that much of that evidence has been destroyed in less than a generation, owing to the accelerating effects of climate change, Ivan Semeniuk writes. Unless a concerted effort is made to rescue what is left, they say, a vast treasury of knowledge about humanity’s presence at the world’s northern extremes will be wiped from existence. “It’s a catastrophe. A majority of sites, including many of the most important ones, are already gone,” said Max Friesen, an Arctic archeologist at the University of Toronto and a member of an international team that has been taking stock of the damage.

Evening Update is written by S.R. Slobodian. If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday evening, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.

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