Tuesday, October 11, 2011

RCI Cyberjournal

Edition 10 October 2011
Canadian International Financial Sports Weather


The Canadian government says it's considering its options following a renewed strike threat at the country's major airline, Air Canada. The government says it would probably intervene if the airline's flight attendants walk off the job this week. A spokesperson for Labour Minister Lisa Raitt says a work stoppage is unacceptable when the economy is fragile. The 6,800 attendants could strike on Thursday after rejecting a second tentative agreement that their union leaders had recommended they accept. A three-day strike by Air Canada's customer service agents ended in a contract agreement after the government drafted back-to-work legislation.


Canada's international trade minister, Ed Fast, is in China seeking to increase bilateral trade. It's part of a renewed effort by the the Canadian government to strengthen ties with Beijing. Last week, Mr. Fast said that Canada is close to reaching a major trade agreement with China. The trade minister said he is hopeful that negotiations on a foreign investment and protection agreement with China will be completed soon. Mr. Fast's visit to China could set the stage for a trip to the country later this fall by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, his second since taking office in 2006.


The election campaign began Monday in the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan. Premier Brad Wall has asked the Lieutenant-Governor to dissolve the legislature. The election campaign is considered a two-party race between the governing Saskatchewan Party, which holds 38 of the legislature's 58 seats, and the New Democratic Party, which has the remaining 20. No Progressive Conservatives have been elected since 1995 and no Liberals since 1999.



The EU has postponed by six days to Oct. 23 a regularly scheduled summit. The postponement is meant to allow time for a broader solution to Greece's debt crisis. In Athens, Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos says Greece has concluded negotiations with inspectors representing the IMF, the EU and the European Central Bank. The inspectors will report on whether a payment of eight million euros as the latest tranche of a bailout is justified. The Greek government has said if the payment isn't forthcoming it will be in bankruptcy.


Syrian activists report at least 31 deaths in the latest wave of political violence. The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says suspected army deserters killed eight soldiers in three attacks in the northern province of Idlib. The group says the army killed seven civilians and that eight more people were killed in clashes between deserters and soldiers in the central city of Homs. In other news, EU foreign ministers have welcomed the creation of a national council in opposition to the government of President Bashar al-Assad. On Sunday, the president's government threatened "tough measures" against any state which formally recognized the Council. Meanwhile, Libya's ruling National Transitional Council said on Monday that it recognizes the Syrian National Council.


At least 10 people died and 19 were wounded in three bombings in western Baghdad on Monday. The bombings were directed at two police and army patrols and the firefighters who arrived at the scene of the first bombing. In a fourth incident, six members of a land mine removal team were killed when a controlled detonation went wrong near Basra, 550 kilometres southeast of the capital. Security in Iraq is scheduled to revert to the country's security forces by the end of the year, with U.S. forces having departed.


Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk held consultations on Monday toward the formation of a new government after winning Sunday's election. Mr. Tusk's centrist Civic Platform party government became the first to win re-election since the end of Communism in 1989. The Civic Platform won 39 per cent of the vote and its coalition partner, the Polish People's Party, won about 8 per cent. The outgoing government has been trying to modernize the Polish economy using EU economic subsidies and privatizing state enterprises.


A court in Ukraine is expected Tuesday to give the verdict in the trial of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko. Analysts say the decision could have drastic implications for Ukraine's future relations with the European Union. EU officials have warned that a ruling against Miss Tymoshenko could jeopardize President Viktor Yanukovych's dreams of EU integration. Prosecutors, who have demanded a jail sentence of seven years, have charged Miss Tymoshenko, when in power, with losing almost $200 million by signing gas deals with Russia in January 2009 that favored Moscow. But the EU has expressed repeated alarm over the trial, saying the charges would never have been brought to court in Europe as no corruption is implied.


The 2011 Nobel Economics Prize was awarded Monday to Thomas Sargent and Christopher Sims of the United States. They received the prize for their research on cause and effect in the macroeconomy. Last week, the Nobel Prizes for Medicine, Physics, Chemistry, Litterature and Peace were awarded.


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez says he'll return to Cuba next week for a series of medical tests to evaluate his cancer treatment. Mr. Chavez says he's undergoing constant treatment even as he attends to government business. The president finished four rounds of chemotherapy treatment in Cuba last month. He underwent surgery there in June for the removal of a cancerous tumour from his pelvis. He vowed last week to win next year's presidential election and to govern for another six years.



TSX, dollar, euro: not traded on holiday. Oil: $85.58 + $2.60.


There has been a major oil agreement between Canada and China. China's Sinopec International Petroleum Exploration has agreed to buy Canadian oil and gas company Daylight Energy for about $2.2 billion. The transaction must be approved by Daylight's shareholders. Sinopec International is a unit of China Petrochemical Corporation.





British Columbia on Tuesday: rain, high C14 Vancouver. Yukon: mix cloud flurries. Northwest Territories: snow. Nunavut: mix cloud sun. Whitehorse, Yellowknife 5, Iqaluit -2. Alberta: rain north, mix sun cloud south. Saskatchewan: rain. Manitoba: mix sun cloud. Edmonton 9, Regina 15, Winnipeg 18. Ontario: sun south, rain north. Quebec: rain. Toronto 23, Ottawa 22, Montreal 18. Maritimes: sun. Newfoundland and Labrador: rain. Fredericton 16, Halifax 15, Charlottetown 11, St. John's 10.

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