Saturday, August 6, 2011

RCI Cyberjournal

Edition 5 August 2011
Canadian International Financial Sports Weather


The Canadian economy picked up only 7,100 jobs in July, after strong gains in April, May and June. The total is about one-half of hwat economists had predicted. Statistics Canada also reported that the unemployment rate fell to 7.2 per cent, its lowest level since December 2008, because fewer people entered the workforce.


Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper starts a six-day visit to Latin America this weekend, visiting Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica and Honduras. The visit starts in Brazil, where he'll have meetings with business leaders in Brasilia and Sao Paulo. His spokesman says the discussions are meant to pave the way for an eventual free-trade accord. About 400 Canadian companies are operating in Brazil, Canada's 10th-biggest trade partner. Mr. Harper will then proceed to Colombia. He's expected to talk up the free-trade deal that will come into effect between the two countries on Aug. 15. The last two stops are Costa Rica and Honduras. The prime minister's spokesman says he'll be talking free trade in Honduras as well. Canada already has such an arrangement with Costa Rica.


Lawyers representing two Montreal men say allegations that they discussed blowing up an airliner are part of a smear campaign. The lawyers were reacting to an article in La Presse newspaper saying it had obtained documents from the national security agency that indicated Adil Charkaoui and Abousfian Abdelrazik had discussed blowing up a flight between Montreal and France. The lawyers say the claim has already been disproved in Federal Court of Canada. The lawyer for Mr. Abdelrazik says the timing of the report is troubling because it comes just as his client is trying to have his name removed from a UN no-fly list. He has already been cleared of various charges by the national security agency and federal police. Mr. Charkaoui's lawyer says she is shocked by the newspaper's allegation because a federal judge has already concluded there's no proof for it.


The Canadian government says it's disappointed with the decision by a Mexican court to drop charges in connection with a hotel fire last year that killed seven people, five of them Canadians. Eighteen other Canadians were injured in the blast at a resort in Playa del Carmen in Yucatan last November. The department says it regrets the court isn't proceeding with the charges. Five people, including contractors and resort workers, faced accusations ranging from homicide to professional misconduct. The official explanation is that an unauthorized gas line under the hotel caused the explosion.



The leaders of Spain and Italy spoke on the telephone on Friday to discuss their rising risk premiums for borrowing. José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero and Silvio Berlusconi agreed that the speculative movements in their countries' risk premiums are difficult to understand. Mr. Zapatero also says he spoke to Nicolas Sarkozy of France and that both agreed on the importance of applying the agreements reached by European leaders on July 21 as soon as possible. The leaders approved a new bailout for Greece and to allow the eurozone's rescue fund to buy bonds in the secondary market. The European Financial Stability Facility could also be sued to lend to government for contingencies other than bailouts. One cause of market nervousness is that national parliament must approve the changes and it's unclear how long this will take. About $2.5 trillion has been wiped off world stocks this week on worries the euro zone debt crisis was spreading and the U.S. was slipping into recession.


Libya's rebel forces say a NATO strike has killed the youngest son of Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi. The son, Khamis, and 31 others are said to have been killed in a NATO air attack in the western town of Zliten. There was no independent verification of Khamis's death, which has been rumoured a number of times during Libya's five month-long civil war. NATO officials confirmed that the alliance's warplanes had hit at least two targets in Zliten overnight but made no comment about the reports of Khamis's death. The Libyan government has denied the report. The 28-year-old commands one of the Libya's toughest fighting units.


North Sudan has halted a shipment of oil from South Sudan. The North says the South failed to pay customs duties on the shipment. South Sudan became independent last month. It accounts for 75 per cent of the production of both countries. But it relies on the North to use the only cross-border pipeline to the port of Port Sudan on the Red Sea. The two sides have failed to agree on a transit to be paid by the South to use it.


Workers at Chile's Escondida mine accepted a company offer Friday to end a two-week strike that shut down the world's biggest copper mine. An end to the strike could ease supply fears and add to a sharp decline in global copper prices. The miners had been seeking higher salaries. Union officials said the proposed bonus worth $5,760 fell short of workers' expectations but acknowledged that strikers were getting tired after two weeks on the picket lines without pay.


A Ukraine court has placed former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko under arrest. Judge Rodion Kireyev agreed with a motion brought by the prosecution for her to be arrested due to repeated violations of a court order. Miss Tymoshenko had until now not been placed in detention but was obliged to stay in Kiev. Miss Tymoshenko was placed in handcuffs just outside the courtroom and was led away by police to detention. The prosecution had accused Miss Tymoshenko of failing to take the trial seriously and mocking the judge and witnesses in a comments on her Twitter account sent from her iPad inside the courtroom. Miss Tymoshenko is accused of bringing a loss to Ukraine's budget of $190 million when she signed a new energy contract with Russia after a brief interruption of gas deliveries in 2009.



Telus Corp. has raised its revenue guidance for the second quarter by $300 million more than the country's second-biggest telecom operator had forecast in December. It also left its quarterly dividend at 55 cents, 10 cents higher than a year earlier. Telus attributes its success to a nearly 10-per cent expansion of its wireless business driven by growing demand for its array of smartphones. Its announcements contrasted with disappointing results from its main rivals Rogers Communications Inc. and BCE Inc.


TSX on Friday: 12,162 - 218. Dollar: US$1.02. Euro: $1.39. Oil: $86.47 - .16.




Brett Lawrie made his long-awaited debut with the Toronto Blue Jays. The Canadian third baseman has been called up from triple-A and was in the lineup against Baltimore tonight. Lawrie is the top prospect in the Jays system.



British Columbia on Saturday: mix sun cloud south, rain north, high C23 Vancouver. Yukon: mix sun cloud. Northwest Territories: sun. Nunavut: rain. Whitehorse 20, Yellowknife 24, Iqaluit 10. Prairies: rain. Edmonton 18, Regina 27, Regina 24. Ontario:rain south, mix sun cloud north. Quebec: mix sun cloud. Toronto, Montreal 29, Ottawa 30. Maritimes: mix sun cloud. Newfoundland and Labrador: rain. Fredericton 29, Halifax 25, Charlottetown 24, St. John's 26.

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