Alberta's latest economic recession is over, but it will happen again (and again) without sustainable long-term solutions.
We've all probably met a financial advisor who told us to buy a "balanced mutual fund," and hard sold their own company's "top performing" fund. They tell a good story, but do they really have our best interests at heart?
When a regulator advises a board of corporate directors that progress on gender diversity is "simply not good enough," that is code that the status quo will not continue and that more regulation may result. And the second wave of regulation is often worse than the first.
The markets are risky. They are a great thing, but they aren't a sure thing. If you want to achieve a return greater than cash, you need to accept some risk to do it. Once you understand this, the good news is there are ways to manage this risk to make it work better for you and provide a higher probability of success.
How is Canada faring in our industrial diversification? Progress on trade diversification over the past 15 years is likely one of the most remarkable developments in Canadian economic history. A strong dependence on traditional markets was only enhanced by the Canada-US FTA, which saw exports to the US soar to over 85 per cent of the total. But a big shift began in the New Millennium.
With the price of oil plunging to below $50 per barrel and the outlook for Alberta's economy and provincial budget revenues falling in tandem, an oft-heard piece of advice is being recycled: Alberta should diversify its economy.
Exporting. Globalization. Diversification. These are big terms, and we usually associate them with big business. This overlooks one key fact: that all businesses start off as small affairs, and the same is generally true for export ventures. So, how are Canada's small exporters doing?