Economics Newsletter – Week of May 31 2021

This week – new GDP & employment data, an upcoming UWES event, some interesting reads, and a fun listen

Written By: Amit Shteyer & Peter Robertson

Canada’s Economy at a Glance

Below we compare Canada and China. Hover over the chart below for more specific numbers – it’s a widget!

Economics Society News, Events, and Articles 



Want to learn even more about investing? We are hosting another event with CFEE about intermediate investing on June 9! Register here.

News and Noteworthy

Canada’s economy expanded again in March — but looks like it shrank in April
New GDP data released Tuesday by StatCan showed growth for the 11th month in a row for March. Nominal GDP rose 1.1% compared to February. Preliminary data suggests that this streak could have already been broken though, predicting a 0.8% nominal decline in GDP for April. Read more.

Economy lost 68,000 jobs in May, unemployment rate rose slightly to 8.2%
Canada’s unemployment rate increased from 8.1% to 8.2% for the month of May as more jobs were lost than expected. The number of jobs in manufacturing also fell for the first time since April 2020.  The unemployment rate still sits at nearly 3% higher than it was pre-pandemic. Read more.

Ontario regulator clamps down on cryptocurrency exchanges amid bitcoin craze
The Ontario Securities Commission cracked down on unregulated cryptocurrency exchanges on Tuesday. It called for up to $1 million in fines and trading bans on the exchange Poliniex, which has ties to Goldman Sachs. The statement said “Entities such as Poloniex, which flout this compliance process, expose Ontario investors to unacceptable risks and create an uneven playing field”. Read more.

China says it will stabilise commodity market, asks coal producers to hike output
As the largest consumer of many commodities, China’s government is seeking to stabilize the market as prices have soared in recent months. It plans to do this by reanalyzing trade and stockpiling practices for commodities like coal, steel, iron ore, and copper. The Chinese government has also asked coal producers in the country to increase production ahead of peak summer demand. Read more. 

Housing fuels Canada’s economic growth in Q1: StatCan
Canada’s economy grew at an annual rate of 5.6% in the first quarter of 2021. This was spearheaded by the 26.5% growth in housing investment compared to Q1 2020. The spur in housing spend is fuelled by a better job market, low mortgage rates and higher employee compensation. Read More. 

Air Canada’s $10M bonuses ‘unacceptable’ while laying off staff, Trudeau says
Air Canada recently revealed that its executives received millions in special stock options and bonuses as a reward for their COVID-19 response. However, this response included laying off thousands of employees, refusing to refund customers for cancelled flights and cutting regional air routes. Canadians are mad, and so is Trudeau. Read More. 

Pay attention, control of Canada’s oil hinges on a hearing few even know is happening
The hearing of Enbridge Inc.’s toll application kicked off in May. Their pipeline faces a threat of oil volume declines due to a pipeline excess that will occur when the Trans Mountain Expansion begins operating soon. This hearing will essentially determine who controls Canadian resources. Read More. 

Recommended Listen 

Is Economic Growth the Wrong Goal?
The endless pursuit of G.D.P., argues the economist Kate Raworth, shortchanges too many people and also trashes the planet. Economic theory, she says, “needs to be rewritten” — and Raworth has tried, in a book called Doughnut Economics.

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