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Robert Presser

Who’s afraid of the big bad debt?

By Robert Presser on November 27, 2008

What a difference two weeks makes; our federal government has moved from calling a budget deficit in fiscal 2009-2010 “irresponsible” to “likely”.  Mr. Harper and Mr. Flaherty divulged ever more pessimistic prognostications for our economic future in order to soften up the public for what is likely going to happen whether we plan for it or not: a couple of years of federal deficits...

Government’s misguided attempt

By Robert Presser on November 13, 2008

Late last week, General Motors and Ford announced a combined third quarter loss of $7.2 billion US.  In other years, this would be considered catastrophic as an annual loss figure, but in the current economic context..

The Cascading Crisis of Confidence

By Robert Presser on October 30, 2008

There is not enough money in the world to give everyone who is suffering through hard times some kind of bailout.  Be they individuals, small businesses or corporations, some will have to be allowed to fail...

Saving the bubble…with inflation!

By Robert Presser on October 16, 2008

Those readers old enough to remember the oil shock of the early 1970’s and the resulting surge in inflation across most of the world’s economies will greet with skepticism the notion of inflation as a solution to the international economic crisis.  In reality, we are already well on our way to inflation with the injection of trillions of dollars worldwide into the banking system to prevent it from seizing up – every dollar created by central banks to cover massive financial losses on the banks’ balance sheets debases the value of the issuing currency, and that’s the road we’re on...

Northern Exposure: so you think your Canadian bank is safe?

By Robert Presser on October 2, 2008

Much has been written over the past week concerning the US Federal Government’s $700 billion rescue plan for the nation’s financial firms.  As of this writing no plan has been passed, but in the meantime the US Federal Reserve and most central banks in the developed world have been flooding the markets with US dollar loans to meet the demand for funds from banking institutions...

The Calm Before the Trade Storm

By Robert Presser on September 18, 2008

This November will mark 20 years since the historic election of 1988, when free trade with the United States dominated the debate. The Conservatives emerged from that election with a reduced minority and proceeded to enact the agreement that had been negotiated with the US...

Getting ready for $200/barrel oil

By Robert Presser on September 4, 2008

Perhaps it seems foolish to suggest that oil will head to $200 US in the wake of a $4 per barrel decline in the price of oil (to $110) on Monday, since Hurricane Gustav caused less damage than expected to offshore oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico...

We’ll get what we vote for

By Robert Presser on July 10, 2008

Compared to many North American cities, Montreal is an easy place to own a car. Insurance rates are relatively low, our traffic congestion problems, although growing, are not at the levels of New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta or Toronto. The baby boomer generation can remember driving downtown and finding street parking with ease; today, the parking is still available, though we are paying for it at expensive rates...

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