Is business growing? Ask the buyers. Want a hot gauge of economic activity? It's probably best to go to the front lines. There are many indicators of economic activity, but they don't all tell the same story. One of those is the purchasing managers' index, now collected for a wide array of countries. What are these "buyers" telling us?
Surprise of the year: World oil production is rising more than was forecast. A shock? No, that's what happens when prices spike. What is surprising is that it's occurring right in our backyard -- in the good ol' USA. The bottom line? How quickly we have gone from running out of oil to being awash in the stuff. Maybe the surprise is that we are surprised that history is merely repeating itself!
Importantly, Canada and nations like America have entered a new phase in which promoting creativity and innovation represent the only option for boosting global competitiveness. Canada or any country desirous of succeeding in an interconnected world must aggressively adopt the idea that creativity is the single most important ingredient to reinventing itself.