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the week’s highlights

Every day ROB Insight delivers exclusive analysis on breaking business news and market-moving events. Streetwise offers news and analysis on Bay Street and the world of finance. Insight the Market delivers up-to-the-minute insights on developing market news.

Here are our editors' picks of some of the best reads available to Globe Unlimited subscribers this week.

Why China has snubbed Russia

Russia surely expected China to back its military incursion into Crimea, so it must have come as a big surprise that Chinese support hasn't been forthcoming. Despite Kremlin assurances to the contrary, China made a point of declaring its support for "the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine." In ROB Insight, Carl Mortished examines the surprisingly deep ties between the two countries, and how a Ukraine free from Russian control is vital to China's long-term strategy.

Back to your caves, housing bears

The latest Chicken Little of Canadian real estate is none other than global bond giant Pimco, which jumped on to the bandwagon this week as it warned of an impending tumble in housing prices. So should we be really scared this time? Tim Kiladze writes in Streetwise that while all the data may point to a looming correction, there's one key fact the bears are not taking into account.

Blame Canada? Jim Cramer doesn't

The Mad Money host and former hedge fund manager again joined Inside the Market to take reader questions that ranged from stock splits to day trading to speculative plays. He also heaps praise on a big pipeline stock, reveals why he's so bullish on the loonie, and offers a rant – and apology! – about U.S. foot-dragging on the Keystone decision.

Chrysler 1, Ottawa 0

The latest round in the auto subsidy bout goes to Chrysler and its CEO Sergio Marchionne, who recently informed the governments of Ontario and Canada that they'd have to stump up another big pile of cash if they wanted to secure the future of its minivan plant in Windsor. After the usual hue and cry about corporate blackmail, Mr. Marchionne changed the game by announcing the company was withdrawing the request and would fund the revamp on its own. In ROB Insight, Brian Milner looks under the hood of the auto maker's canny strategy.

Canadian bank stocks scrape the ceiling

Valuation levels are reasonable, dividends are attractive and profits are strong, yet domestic banks stocks have barely budged in 2014, trailing the TSX benchmark by four percentage points. The culprit is likely the domestic consumer, says Scott Barlow in Inside the Market, as he looks at the relationship between bank equities and household debt.

Commercial lending losing altitude

One of the biggest growth engines for Canadian banks over the past few years has been commercial lending. When the personal lending segment hit the brakes, borrowing by small and mid-sized businesses continued to grow by leaps and bounds. Now those leaps aren't so high, and the gains have slipped out of the low double-digits. It's not a consistent picture, as Tim Kiladze explains in Streetwise, with some sectors driving more growth than others and different pictures emerging on either side of the border.