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Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:

The first COVID-19 vaccine for kids under 12 could be in front of Health Canada’s review team in a matter of days, and Pfizer Inc. says it should be able to start shipping its new pediatric formulation soon after it receives approval.

The drugmaker last week submitted data from a clinical trial involving kids five to 11 years old to U.S. health authorities, and on Thursday made the formal request for it to be authorized for that age group in the United States. The company’s Canadian spokeswoman said the company is working with Health Canada on the final steps before that formal request is made here.

The vaccine, which Pfizer now refers to by the brand name Comirnaty, was authorized for people at least 16 years old last December, and for kids between 12 and 15 in May. More than 80 per cent of Canadians over 12 are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and that has been partly why the infection rate among kids under 12 has been growing.

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‘Some risk’ inflation will prove more persistent than previously thought, BoC’s Macklem says

Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem says inflation is being driven by forces that are more complicated than the central bank expected, while the economic recovery could take longer than previously thought.

During a virtual appearance at the Washington-based Council on Foreign Relations, Macklem said there is “some risk” that inflation will turn out to be more persistent than previously thought. At the same time, Macklem reiterated the bank’s view that the current spike in inflation is largely the result of temporary factors related to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as supply chain disruptions.

Inflation in Canada has run above the bank’s 1 per cent to 3 per cent target since May, hitting an 18-year high of 4.1 per cent in August. Macklem said that the bank is watching a number of indicators to see if a one-time jump in prices is turning into more persistent inflation, including inflation expectations and wage growth.

ALSO ON OUR RADAR

Canadiens goaltender Carey Price voluntarily enters NHL/NHLPA player assistance program: The NHL Players’ Association said Price will be away from the team while he takes part in the program but did not specify why Price entered the program and said it would not provide further comment. On Wednesday, Canadiens head coach Dominique Ducharme said Price was recovering from an unspecified illness.

Senate panel details Donald Trump’s efforts to reverse 2020 election results: The report describes how Trump tried to undo the vote and exert his will on the department, asking leaders to declare the election “corrupt.” His actions led to a near-revolt at department headquarters that receded only after senior officials warned of a mass resignation.

Copperleaf soars in TSX debut, joining B.C.’s burgeoning billion-dollar tech club: Shares in the decision analytics software maker were up 35 per cent earlier Thursday from its issue price of $15 apiece, set late Wednesday. That gave the company, led by CEO Judi Hess, a valuation in excess of $1-billion, making it one of the few women-led technology companies in Canada to achieve a 10-figure valuation.

Tanzanian writer Abdulrazak Gurnah awarded 2021 Nobel Prize for Literature: Gurnah’s experience of crossing continents and cultures has fed his novels about the impact of migration on individuals and societies. He says those themes “are things that are with us every day” – even more now than when he came to Britain in the 1960s.

MARKET WATCH

Canada’s main stock index posted its strongest day in more than four months following a temporary truce in the U.S. debt-ceiling standoff that could have resulted in a government default.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed up 224.55 points at 20,416.21, with information technology and energy leading the triple-digit increase. In New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 337.95 points at 34,754.94. The S&P 500 index was up 36.21 points at 4,399.76 while the Nasdaq Composite was up 152.11 points at 14,654.02.

The Canadian dollar traded for 79.63 cents US compared with 79.28 cents US on Wednesday.

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TALKING POINTS

Justin Trudeau ‘regrets’ his National Day of Truth and Reconciliation vacation. That’s not enough

“This is the beautiful thing about so many Indigenous Peoples: No matter what crap is thrown at us – from genocidal laws and policies aimed to extinguish us, to racists yelling for us to get off the sidewalk – we rise. Our existence is our resistance. That isn’t just a slogan. It is the truth.” - Tanya Talaga

Atlantic Canada grapples with pandemic-fuelled population boom

“The average price for a detached single-family home in the city of Toronto last month was more than $1.5-million. Bonavista has detached, single-family ‘fixer-uppers,’ as Mr. Norman describes them, listed for less than $100,000. A half a million will buy a veritable palace.” - David Parkinson

The abandonment of New Zealand’s COVID-Zero strategy leaves few people pleased

“New Zealand seems to be compressing a year’s worth of overseas struggles into a few short weeks. Since August there have been anti-lockdown protests, vaccine misinformation has appeared on social media and debates have erupted over whether people can be required to get jabbed and wear a mask. The comfortable certainty that you can share a breath with a stranger has been replaced by the unease that you need to co-exist with this dangerous virus.” - Justin Giovannetti

Will the Pandora Papers lead to a crackdown on tax havens?

The question now is whether the embarrassing disclosures, which buttress growing demands from watchdog groups to put an end to a system that costs governments an estimated US$200-billion combined in lost income-tax revenue annually, will finally stir governments into the concerted action needed to stamp them out. - Brian Milner

LIVING BETTER

Why bundled up for winter is the new black

Miuccia Prada’s alpine collection is the latest example of high-fashion houses looking to winter sports for inspiration. Ever since luxury skiwear label Moncler began collaborating with designers on its Genius offshoot, runways have been bombarded with a storm of cold-weather attire.

This season’s puffers, statement sweaters and utilitarian footwear suggests we will continue to romanticize the cold.

TODAY’S LONG READ

Their own private Idaho: U.S. conservatives get out of liberal states and into a ‘freedom oasis’

Bill Schmidt, 73, moved from California to a church in Idaho County because he says he was tired of the 'Communist government' of the Golden State.Catrina Rioux/The Globe and Mail

Across North America, the pandemic has caused people to rethink where they live. The flight from city centres to suburbs and rural communities has upended property markets across the continent as people seek more personal space and cheaper housing.

In the United States, the pandemic has seen movement from liberal areas to conservative regions, a migration that follows real estate prices – Republican-leaning states tend to have cheaper housing. But it also comes at a time when Americans are, in ways not seen before, letting politics guide where they choose to reside. U.S. census estimates show states that voted for Donald Trump in the last presidential election saw their populations grow, on average, nearly 10 times faster between April 1 and July 1 of 2020 than those that voted for Joe Biden.

Of the 10 states that saw the greatest percentage of inbound moves, eight voted for Trump. At the top of the list: Idaho, followed by South Carolina.

As The Globe’s Nathan VanderKlippe writes, what’s happening in Idaho is happening across the country.

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