Biden & Trudeau met, probably talked sh*t about the previous guy
Will you help us grow Btchcoin?
We’re always looking for ways to raise $ to pay our volunteer writers – and we’re so grateful for those who have contributed directly to our Buy Me a Coffee page. If you can chip in, we’ll be able to put our money where our mouth is and pay womxn for their time and talents.
We’re Banking on an Inclusive Economic Recovery…
What the Governor said about employment:
Canada has lost over 850,000 jobs in the past year, which, like much of the pandemic, have been disproportionately felt by women and youth
Affordable and accessible child care is going to be critical to get labour force participation back on track (louder for the people in the back!)
More active labour market policies from government may help limit the long-term impact of the pandemic on women’s careers
To ensure we have job opportunities in the future economy, our education system needs to include more digital skills and digital literacy development — and our employers need to invest in these skills too.
What the Governor said about real estate:
There are currently no plans to raise interest rates, at least until the economy and employment have recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic
This is causing a bit of nervousness in the real estate industry about low interest rates causing a housing boom, inevitably followed by a bust when interest rates start to rise
At the same time, Canada’s economic recovery would be well served by some sectors (e.g. real estate) doing well, so the Governor is unlikely to do anything to curb the hot real estate market
Biden and Trudeau Meet for the First Time…
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and a delegation of Canadian officials were welcomed to the White House virtually by President Biden. Biden kicked off talks by saying that the U.S. has no “closer friend than Canada” in the first bilateral one-on-one since Biden took office.
The former President Donald Trump’s term was fraught with trade tensions between Canada and America. Kathryn Friedman, a law professor specializing in U.S.-Canada policy at the University at Buffalo, noted “the bilateral meeting between Biden and Trudeau represents a turning of the page from the more contentious era.”
However, Biden’s first few weeks were contentious for Canada as he blocked the $8 billion Keystone XL project pipeline. He also proposed the “Buy American” program, a program aimed at directing more U.S. spending toward domestic manufacturers sparking uncertainty for Canadian suppliers.
Despite this, the two leaders made clear they plan to work together. The two leaders stated they’ll work closely on key issues such as combatting climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Thank you, again, for stepping up in such a big way on tackling climate change. U.S. leadership has been sorely missed over the past years” Trudeau stated.
Trudeau also thanked Biden’s support for the release of two Canadians held by China, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig. “Human beings are not bartering chips,” Biden said. “We’re going to work together until we get their safe return.”
Despite both countries’ commitment to tackling the COVID-19 pandemic, a Canadian government source said there was no progress on the possibility of Canada accessing COVID-19 vaccines produced in the United States.
“The president is just in a tough position,” Friedman explains. “He politically needs to ensure that if not every single person in the United States is vaccinated before we start shipping it to other countries, that we are really well on the way to having folks vaccinated.”
Talking to an Investor: Zoe Wolpert from WealthSimple on Socially Responsible Investing and Cryptocurrency
Interview by Cydney Melnyk
Zoe Wolpert is a Senior Investment and Retirement Specialist at WealthSimple, she holds the Chartered Investment Management Designation and a Certificate in Advanced Investment Advice.
This is part 1 in a series of interviews with Zoe to debut our partnership with Wealthsimple (more on that in coming weeks)
What is the difference between investing using WealthSimple vs. investing using a traditional bank?
Zoe: What WealthSimple does differently is that we are a tech first company. We have one platform where we do all the investment for you, it’s an automated process called passive investing, that’s WealthSimple Invest. We also offer WealthSimple Trade which is self-directed, so you can do your own investing using our app or website. Two options, one where we do the investing for you and one where you do it yourself. I think the reason people come to WealthSimple is because they like having these options and they know that they’re going to get the most efficient fee structure and high-quality investment products.
Many readers were really interested in WealthSimple’s Socially Responsible Investing. What is the difference between the socially responsible account and a regular investment account?
Zoe: I use the Socially Responsible portfolio to invest and we updated them very recently. To summarize, the portfolio maintains the investment strategy of our Core Portfolios (passive, diversified, low cost) and excludes:
Big polluters like oil and gas, thermal coal mining, coal power generation, and the top 25% carbon producers in each industry.
Companies in violation of the UN Global Compact (major controversies and human right violations).
Defense contractors and weapons manufacturers.
Companies involved in tobacco, alcohol, casino, and adult entertainment.
Companies with less than 3 or less than 25% women on their boards.
There is a review of these screens on a regular basis to make sure the companies are still complying.
WealthSimple offers the option of investing in cryptocurrency. What would you say to someone interested in investing in cryptocurrency?
Zoe: You should see it as a speculative investment, which means that you should only put in money that you can afford to lose. Hopefully you make some money, but you would be okay if it went to zero and you lost everything. It’s not somewhere to put all your eggs into and frankly no individual security really is. Even for individual stocks of a well-known company, there have been well known companies that have not survived and so you should think of crypto in the same way. It is an incredibly interesting and fascinating new development in our times and it’s completely okay to want to be a part of that story, but just do it in a smart way.
Stay tuned for Part 2, next week!
Stuff We Read and We Liked:
Vindhya recommends this long(ish) read on the “ghost kitchens” (think virtual restaurants) popping up due to the pandemic.
This buzzworthy opinion piece by NYT writer Nick Kristof on why sanctions should be imposed upon Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman; “The crown prince killed my friend Jamal Khashoggi, and we do next to nothing.”
Claire recommends this piece about why cryptocurrencies are surging in popularity in conflict zones.