CANADA FX DEBT-C$ softens as U.S. debt deal talks stall
Treasury says the government will reach its borrowing limit. The Senate halted discussions on its own plan, as it waited for the fractious Republican-controlled House of Representatives to come up with an alternative proposal before Oct. 17, when the government is expected to reach its limit of $16.7 trillion. The U.S. government shutdown and any economic impact from defaulting would not bode well for Canada, whose largest trading partner is the United States. “It’s really hard to trace a lot of flows, there’s really not a lot of risk from people on the table … there’s too much uncertainty and we’re just waiting for stuff to clear in Washington,” said Darcy Browne, Managing Director at Capital Markets Trading, CIBC. “Dollar/Canada’s really kind of smack in the middle of the range and unattractive. There just hasn’t been a story there.” The Canadian dollar finished its North American session at C$1.0380 versus the greenback, or 96.34 U.S. cents, softer than Monday’s Thanksgiving holiday close at C$1.0349, or 96.63 U.S. cents. The Canadian dollar’s performance was mostly weaker against other key currencies. It touched multi-month lows against its commodities sister currencies, hitting its softest level against the Australian dollar since early June and its weakest level against the New Zealand dollar since late April. Domestically, Sales of existing homes in Canada jumped in September from a year ago and prices rose, though analysts cautioned the gains came partly on the back of depressed activity in 2012 that followed tighter mortgage rules. Figures from the Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index showed Canadian home prices were unchanged in September after hitting a record high the month before, suggesting the housing market is cooling.
Elections Canada appoints high-powered board as federal government prepares new elections law
In the first period, Canada had a 5-4 edge in shots that failed to reflect its territorial control. The USA’s game was disjointed but the Americans’ speed still led to a couple of quality chances that Szabados (15 saves) rejected. Ouellette sent Canada into a 1-0 lead at 4:16 of the second, converting Jayna Hefford’s cross-slot power play pass. Only 1:21 later, Bailey Bram knocked in Canada’s second goal during a goal-mouth scrum. MORE: Men’s Olympic hockey tracker Meanwhile, the Canadian team defense ramped up its play, effectively blunting any USA attack by hindering breakouts, smothering rushes and blocking shots. Until a late power play, the U.S. put one shot on goal during an earlier player-advantage. The extent of Canadian domination was reflected not only in the two goals but the 12-2 shot advantage in the second period and 17-6 through 40 minutes. Then came the third with Tara Watchorn putting Canada into a 3-0 lead at 4:54. The United States finally broke through during a two-player advantage. Brianna Decker swatted the puck out of the air right in front of Szabados at 11:05. Gigi Marvin brought the pro-USA crowd to full throttle at 14:39 by cutting the lead to 3-2. The U.S. kept up the attack, but the Canadians secured their second consecutive win against the Americans at Gutterson, following up their 5-4 overtime victory in the championship game of the 2012 IIHF women’s world championships.
Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand, has been unusually prominent in the media lately, calling on the government to give new powers to the investigators in charge of getting to the bottom of election crimes. He has several times pointed out that the government has not consulted him on the changes it plans to make. If the government and the elections agency disagree on the proposed legislation, Mayrand will be able to take advice from a whoas who of Canadian politics. Along with Binnie and Fraser, the board includes former premiers Bob Rae and Roy Romanow, former Reform Party leader Preston Manning, former federal cabinet ministers John Manley and Michael Wilson, Conservative Sen. Hugh Segal, journalist Lise Bissonnette, political scientist Paul Thomas, former Ontario ombudsman Roberta Jamieson, MichAle Thibodeau-DeGuire, of laAcole Polytechnique de MontrAal, and Cathy Wong, of the Quebec YMCA. In a release, Elections Canada said the board will advise Mayrand aon matters relating to Canadaas electoral system, its voting processes, and support for a vigorous democracya That may include advising Mayrand on how to react to the governmentas Elections Act changes, said Jean-Pierre Kingsley, who was chief electoral officer until 2006. aThis seems to be to be a good idea because it allows the chief electoral officer to have this body, against which to measure proposals from the government for change, and to accept significant support for his views, and their views, and at the same time to help him steer the course for all the modernizations for the statutes,a he said. The relationship between Elections Canada and the Conservatives has often been difficult. Prime Minister Stephen Harper was a vocal critic of the organization when he was with the National Citizens Coalition, once deriding the election bureaucrats as ajackasses.a The party complained loudly about Elections Canadaas investigation and prosecution of the Tories for exceeding local election limits in the 2006 election. The party pleaded guilty and paid $52,000 in fines in 2011. The prime ministeras former parliamentary secretary, Peterborough MP Dean Del Mastro, was often critical of the agency when he was pointman for the government on the arobocalla scandal. He himself now faces charges of exceeding spending limits on his 2008 campaign, and has left the Conservative caucus. Kingsley said that he hopes the government and Elections Canada are not headed for a showdown over the upcoming legislation. aOne could only hope that with all the experiences the government has undergone in its relationship with the parliamentary officers, that this would be gone by now,a he said.