Thursday, July 7, 2011

RCI Cyberjournal

Edition 6 July 2011
Canadian International Financial Sports Weather


Prince William and his wife Catherine paid a visit to the town of Slave Lake in northern Alberta on the latest stage of their visit to Canada. The visit wasn't on their original itinerary but they wished to express their sympathy for the town that was devastated by a forest fire last May. The royal couple began the visit with a four-hour tour of Slave Lake in a minibus then met residents, firefighters and rescue crews at Northern Lakes College. The fire destroyed more than 400 houses and forced 7,000 people from their homes. The Insurance Bureau of Canada said on Wednesday that the insured damage at Slave Lake amounted to $700 million, making it second-biggest insurance disaster in Canadian history after the ice storms that battered Quebec and Ontario in 1998, which cost $1.8 billion. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrive in Calgary, AB, on the last leg of their Canadian visit.


Five Canadian aid groups have joined to help deal with a drought in East Africa which they say threatens the lives of 10 million people. They say the drought in the region is the worst in 60 years. The groups say the lack of rain has reduced livestock, incomes and food supplies and caused food prices to soar. CARE Canada says that 1,000 people a day are arriving in refugees camps. The aid organizations are trying to raise funds for safe drinking water, food, materials to build shelters and family support. In addition to CARE Canada, the coalition includes Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Quebec, Plan Canada and Save the Children Canada.


The head of the Consumers Association of Canada says he's shocked to learn how little the Canadian Cancer Society is spending on research. Bruce Cran was reacting to a report that the share which the Society devotes to research has been steadily shrinking, while the proportion for fundraising efforts has grown dramatically. A report by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. says that money spent on research has been cut almost in half since 2000 and now amounts to 22 per cent of the total. In the same period, money spent for fundraising has risen from 26 per cent to almost 43 per cent. Mr. Cran noted that many Canadians donate to the Society in the belief that much of the money goes to researchers trying to conquer cancer.


The government of the province of Quebec has launched a 60-day public consultation period before introducing a "cap-and-trade" system to check greenhouse gas emissions. The government wants to reduce industrial emissions by 20 per cent of 1990 levels by 2020. The program will initially involve 100 companies that are responsible for 85 per cent of the province's emissions. Under the system, the government will allocate emissions limits for installations emitting at least 25,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. Companies can either invest to reduce their emissions or purchase offsets from the government or on the public market. Environment Minister Pierre Arcand acknowledges that the change will entail higher fuel costs for Quebecers. But Economic Development Minister Clément Gignac, says Quebec can become a specialist in clean technology by joining the first jurisdictions in North America to adopt the "cap-and-trade" system.


A study indicates that new immigrants to Canada have better safety driving records that long-time Canadians. A ten-year study in the province of Ontario has found that immigrant drivers are 40 to 50 per cent less likely than long-term residents to be in a bad crash. The study says it's possible that one-third of hospital admissions for automobile accidents could be avoided if long-term residents drove like newcomers.


A Canadian sports doctor who had among his clientele many famous North American athletes has pleaded guilty in a U.S. court to having brought unapproved drugs, including human growth hormone, into the U.S. Dr. Anthony Galea, a healing specialist from Toronto, was indicted last October on charges that he smuggled HGH and other substances into the U.S., conspired and lied to border agents. The indictment did not identify any of his clients, but prosecutors said they included golfers, professional baseball and football players. Golfer Tiger Woods and baseball star Alex Rodriguez have acknowledged having been treated by Dr. Galea but said they didn't receive performance-enhancing drugs. The guilty plea eliminates the possibility that famous names might crop up in the evidence. Major professional sports have banned HGH.


A well-known Canadian aboriginal actor, Gordon Tootoosis, has died in the province of Saskatchewan at the age of 69. He appeared in dozens of films and television shows over the years. He was also an accomplished stage actor and a founding member of the board of directors of the Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company. The national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Shawn Atleo, says Mr. Tootoosis was a Cree and Canadian cultural icon.



Libyan rebel leaders will have their first meeting with NATO's 28-member North Atlantic Council in Brussels on July 13. NATO Secretary Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen says members of the National Transitional Council will present their plans for a democratic transition. Several NATO nations, including Canada, the U.S., France and Britain have recognized the Council as the legitimate representative of the Libyan people. NATO has been conducting an air war aimed at protecting civilians from the forces of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi for the past four months. Mr. Rasmussen says the alliance has damaged or destroyed more than 2,700 military targets since March 31, including 600 tanks and artillery pieces and 800 ammunition dumps.


British Prime Minister David Cameron has backed the idea of holding a public inquiry into telephone hacking but says it should be carried out only after the police complete their investigation. The House of Commons held an emergency debate on the subject on Wednesday. This followed revelations that not only has New of the World newspaper hacked into the telephones of celebrities and politicians but also of the relatives of murdered children and possibly of victims of the terrorist bombings in London in 2005.


The new managing director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, is promising to present reforms that will allow fast-growing emerging markets a bigger role at the global lending institution. She says that institutions like the IMF must better reflect the shifting balance of power in the global economy. China, Brazil and India are among some of the developing nations seeking a bigger role in the IMF's operations. Miss Lagarde won the top spot at the IMF after her predecessor, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, resigned in May to face charges of sexual assault against a hotel maid in New York. Strauss-Kahn has denied the charges and the case appears to be unraveling over questions about the credibility of his accuser.


Thousands of people attended a ceremony at an arena Wednesday in the U.S. capital Washington, DC, to celebrate the 76th birthday of Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama. He urged his followers to mark the occasion by practicing compassion. The Dalai Lama recently said that he was stepping down from his political role and handing it over to a newly elected prime minister of the Tibetan government-in-exile. During his stay in Washington, the Dalai Lama is expected to meet Thursday with House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. It's not known whether President Barack Obama will meet the visitor.


China is upset with a ruling by the World Trade Organization that says Beijing's export restrictions on raw materials are illegal. The WTO upheld complaints by the United States, European Union and Mexico. The ruling states that China had failed to abide by regulations when it imposed quotas and duties on several types of minerals, including bauxite, coking coal, magnesium, manganese, silicon metal, silicon carbide, yellow phosphorus and zinc. But a newspaper owned by China's Xinhua news agency accused the EU and the U.S. of wanting access to China's low-cost resources to satisfy the needs of their domestic industries, especially high-tech industries.


Chile's leader is attempting to appease student protesters by proposing the creation of a $4-billion fund for higher education. Sebastian Pinera outlined measures in a nationwide address. They include more grants and cheaper student loans. High school and university students have been protesting for several weeks, calling for greater government investment in public education. Among other demands, the demonstrators want secondary schools, currently run by municipalities, to be under central administration. Mr. Pinera says the student fund will be financed by revenue from Chile's main export, copper.



The Canadian government may subject last week's sale of patents owned by defunct high-technology firm Nortel Networks Corp. to a review under the Canada Investment Act. Industry Minister Christian Paradis says he has asked his officials to study how the Act might apply to Nortel's final asset sale to earn money to repay creditors. The Act requires that any sale of a Canadian company for more than $312 million be of "net benefit" to Canada. A consortium comprising Research in Motion, Apple, EMC, Ericsson, Microsoft and Sony paid US$4.5 billion for more than 6,000 patents. Some of them are expected to become the foundation of wireless networks over the next decade.


Federal Court of Canada has awarded $2.5 million in punitive damages to French luxury goods retailer Louis Vuitton, a record in a goods counterfeiting case in Canada. The court has ruled that two Vancouver-based companies, Singga Enterprises (Canada) Inc. and Carnation Fashion Co., as well as Altec Productions of Markham, ON, had violated the trademarks of Louis Vuitton and Burberry Ltd., two of the world's most famous brands of luxury goods. The Canadian firms are to stop the counterfeiting and pay $1.4 million to Louis Vuitton and $1.1 million to Burberry. The plaintiffs had complained that three Canadian companies were engaged in sophisticated counterfeit operations in China with the purpose of importing vast amounts of goods into Canada to sell them nationwide in stores, at gift shows and online.


An independent panel says western province of Alberta needs an arms-length independent commission to monitor the environmental impact of the oilsands development. Alberta's Environment Minister formed the panel in January after a study found major flaws in the way the province keeps an eye on the oil industry. The panel says the commission would have to be science-based and not influenced by economic factors.


TSX on Wednesday: 13,403 + 20. Dollar: US$1.03. Euro: $1.38. Oil: $96.62 - .27.




Canada will officially finish last at the FIFA Women's World Cup.

The Canadians exited Tuesday after a 1-0 loss to No. 27 Nigeria.

Canada was also beaten 2-1 by No. 2 Germany and 4-0 by No. 7 France.


Canada can finish no higher than ninth at the FIBA under-19 men's basketball world championship. The young Canadians lost 94-73 to Serbia Wednesday and are now headed to the classification round. Canada finished seventh at the 2009 tournament and was ranked sixth in the latest world rankings.


The South Korean city of Pyeongchang has been awarded the 2018 Winter Olympics. Pyeongchang defeated rivals Munich, Germany, and Annecy, France, on Wednesday in the first round of a secret ballot of the International Olympic Committee. The South Koreans had lost narrowly in previous bids for the 2010 and 2014 Olympics. Pyeongchang will be the first city in Asia outside Japan to host the Winter Games. Japan held the Games in Sapporo in 1972 and Nagano in 1998.



British Columbia on Thursday: rain, high C21 Vancouver. Yukon: mix sun rain. Northwest Territories: sun. Nunavut: rain. Whitehorse 20, Yellowknife 22, Iqaluit 10. Alberta, Manitoba: rain. Saskatchewan: rain north, sun south. Edmonton 26, Regina 30, Winnipeg 28. Ontario: mix sun cloud south, rain north. Quebec: sun. Toronto 25, Ottawa, Montreal 26. New Brunswick, Nova Scotia: sun. Prince Edward Island: rain. Newfoundland and Labrador: mix sun cloud. Fredericton, Halifax 27, Charlottetown 21, St. John's 23.

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