A stronger Canadian economy is giving Justin Trudeau momentum ahead of the fall election

A dead heat among voters over which leader is best suited to steer the Canadian economy appears to be breaking in Justin Trudeau’s favour. The Liberal prime minister is pulling ahead of his main rival on the crucial question of economic stewardship in the run up to the October election. According to a survey by Nanos Research Group for Bloomberg News, 31 per cent of respondents say they trust Trudeau most to promote economic growth, compared with 26 per cent for Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer. Nearly a third of those…

High-flying loonie about to hit headwinds — and drop below 76 cents, top banks warn

The Canadian dollar is having the best year of any major currency, but there’s concern about its near-term outlook among analysts at some of the nation’s top banks. They’re worried the loonie could pay the price if Canadian economic data fail to sustain a recent string of strong results as trade barriers and protectionism mount. “We’re growing more comfortable with fading Canadian dollar rallies,” said Bipan Rai, head of foreign-exchange strategy at the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. The currency has appreciated amid stronger economic reports, but expectations are for…

Trade wars are the number one risk to the global economy, warns IMF

The International Monetary Fund said more work is needed to further reduce global trade imbalances amid increasing tensions, while issuing a fresh warning that such conflicts are weighing on the global economy. “It is imperative that all countries avoid policies that distort trade,” the IMF said in its annual External Sector Report released Wednesday in Washington. “Against a backdrop of escalating trade tensions, greater urgency is needed in tackling persistent excess imbalances.” The report comes as the Washington-based fund confronts a surge in protectionism around the world that’s seen dragging…

Inflation eases (just enough) as Canadians pay less for gas and internet

Canadian annual inflation decelerated in June after gasoline prices declined and customers paid less for internet services. Annual consumer price inflation slowed to 2 per cent, from 2.4 per cent in May, Statistics Canada said Wednesday from Ottawa. The number matched analyst expectations. On a monthly basis, consumer prices fell 0.2 per cent in June, less than the 0.3 per cent median forecast. Core inflation — seen as a better gauge of underlying prices — held steady around the Bank of Canada’s target. The average of the three measures ticked down slightly to 2…

World’s biggest chemical company fires warning shot across industries from cars to crops with ‘shocking’ profit warning

BASF SE fired a warning shot across industries, as the world’s largest chemical company said slowing markets from cars to crops and the impact of the U.S.-China trade war threaten to cut profit by 30 per cent this year. The German maker of plastics, pesticides and lubricant additives dropped the most in two months, leading chemical-maker peers lower with profit warning that one trader described as a “shocking.” But with the Ludwigshafen-based company supplying industries ranging from autos to consumer products and computer chips, investors quickly called into question the…