Canada Report: Banks Gain FX Business, Housing Resale Prices Hit Record High...and Then There's RIM
Plus: TD America reduces Canada's growth projections, Canada's face in the Chevron lawsuit, and some lessons for trading with Burma.
MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Here's a look at today's top stories in the business pages of Canada's newspapers and magazines.
The Globe and Mail
Link: High-Rated Aussie, Canadian Banks Snare More FX Trade
"Australian and Canadian banks are picking up foreign exchange business from their eurozone rivals as clients and market players worried by the bloc's debt crisis seek trading partners with better credit ratings.
"With anxiety rising about the chance of a major bank collapse, investors want reassurance that the party on the other side of their trade will still be around when the time comes to settle up – and are turning to credit ratings for guidance.
"In contrast to many European banks saddled with the debt of troubled eurozone governments, the major Australian and Canadian banks have avoided some of the traps their peers fell into. Most, therefore, have stronger credit ratings."
Link: Will This Be the First of Many Losses for RIM?
"Research In Motion Ltd.'s forecast for a first-quarter operating loss Thursday, its first since 2004, is generating speculation that failure to deliver a best-selling phone will create losses the rest of the year.
"While 31 analysts on average project an operating profit of US$105-million for the fiscal year ending next March, 14 predict a loss, according to estimates compiled by Bloomberg. RIM's first-quarter operating loss may total US$36.3 million, based on the estimates.
"RIM is grappling with an exodus of smartphone customers to Apple Inc.'s iPhone and Google Inc.'s Android, following product delays. Customers have grown tired of waiting for the next-generation BlackBerry 10 lineup, for which Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM has yet to announce a release date. A full-year loss would be a reversal for a company that earned an operating profit of US$4.6 billion in fiscal 2011. Will this be the first of many losses for RIM?
The Canadian Press via Canadian Business
Link: With Risks Rising, TD Shaves Canadian Growth Projection, Raises Odds on Slump
"Economists have joined others in downgrading their forecast for both Canadian and global growth this year and next in light of renewed fears about Europe and other economic difficulties.
"The TD economists say mortgage and other credit changes recently announced by Ottawa will contribute to forces slowing Canada's recovery over the next two years.
"The bank now expects growth in Canada this year will average 2.1%, shaving a tenth of a point from its March forecast. And it now expects 2% growth in 2013, down four-tenths of a point from the earlier forecast."
The Globe and Mail - Report on Business
Link: Court rules Goldcorp acquisition of Chilean copper, gold deposit 'proper'
"Goldcorp Inc. has won a court battle against larger rival Barrick Gold Corp. over ownership of the potentially massive El Morro copper-and-gold deposit in Chile, a potentially massive deposit that could become a mine as early as 2017 and keep running for nearly 20 years.
"The ruling, by Ontario Court justice Herman Wilton-Siegel, may end a protracted dispute between Canada's two largest gold miners, and comes at a time when the industry is finding it harder and harder to find new deposits of significant size and in friendly jurisdictions.
"El Morro could hold more than three times the amount of gold that Goldcorp produced last year and the ruling will likely impact the company's stock price when markets open on Wednesday."
The Globe and Mail - Report on Business
Link: The Canadian Face of the Biggest Lawsuit in the World
"Prominent litigator Alan Lenczner wouldn't say why he recently invited a handful of reporters to the boardroom of his firm's 26th-floor downtown Toronto offices. But he promised news about 'the biggest case in the world.'
"He wasn't kidding. Mr. Lenczner, 69, a veteran of high-stakes court battles, has now become the Canadian face of perhaps the largest, longest-running, and most controversial lawsuit against a major company anywhere in the world.
"With a slim, eight-page statement of claim filed in Ontario Superior Court on May 30, Mr. Lenczner brought the $18.3-billion Ecuadorean court judgment that is hanging over oil giant Chevron Corp. to Canada."
The Globe and Mail - Report on Business
Link: Rick George Quits Canadian Pacific Railway Board
"Rick George, the former chief executive officer at Suncor Energy Inc., has resigned from Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd.'s board of directors.
Mr. George's departure comes on the heels of the exit of another CP director, David Raisbeck. The two resignations have left the Calgary-based railway with 14 directors."
Reuters via Yahoo Canada
Link: Canada Home Resale Prices Hit Record, Growth Slows
"Canadian home resale prices rose in May from April, hitting record highs for the second month in a row, but the pace of growth on an annual basis continued to slow, the Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index showed on Wednesday.
"Ten of the 11 metropolitan markets tracked by the index were higher and one was flat. It was the first time in nearly a year that none of the 11 markets declined.
"The index, which measures price changes for repeat sales of single-family homes, showed overall prices climbed 1.1 percent in May from a month earlier. It does not show actual prices."
Link: Lessons for Canada's Coming Burma Trade
"Ottawa's move to allow trade with the country (also known as Myanmar) presents Canadian companies with a real challenge: How to seize the opportunity to invest in what may be Asia's last frontier market without adding to Burma's woes-or damaging your own brand.
"The Burmese regime's suppression of human rights is well documented. Yet the country also boasts vast reserves of minerals, timber, natural gas and oil. With nearly 56 million people and little industry today, it is rich in potential and may in time become a thriving consumer market.....Canadian firms can't afford to sit on the sidelines.
"For starters, businesses should abide by international monitoring agreements regarding labour, ethnic rights, and environmental protection. They can seek guidance from programs like Better Work, a partnership between the International Labour Organization and International Finance Corp. that helps manufacturers...build competitive businesses and apply ethical labour practices. The Canadian Mining Association could form a similar partnership with Canadian banks, providing training on sustainable practices to Burmese natural resource firms while leveraging the trillions of dollars raised on the Toronto Stock Exchange for projects that give environmental groups and local residents a say.
"My big lesson? That consumers and markets reward those companies that live their values."
The Canadian Press via CBC.ca
Link: Ottawa-Based Telecom Company Mitel Networks Corp. Lists on the TSX
"Mitel Networks Corp. (TSX:MNW) began trading at the Toronto Stock Exchange ("TSX") on Wednesday, a return of sorts for one of the pioneers of Canada's telecom technology industry.
"The Ottawa-based company is a global provider of business communications services, software services, IP telephony platforms, mobility applications, and network services.
A predecessor of the company was also publicly traded on Canada's largest stock exchange before Mitel was purchased in the 1980s and taken private. It has since gone through numerous transformations, including its split from Zarlink Semiconductors several years ago.
"Mitel has long roots as a technology pioneer in Canada and we are excited to be able to extend trading of our shares to the [TSX] and to expand our shareholder base," said president and CEO Richard McBee.
The Canadian Press via Canadian Business Magazine
Link: MacDonald, Dettwiler to Buy California Satellite Company SS/L for US$875M
"Shares of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (TSX:MDA) soared more than 25% Wednesday on news it will more than double its annual revenue and order backlog by acquiring a California satellite manufacturer for US$875 million.
"'This is a game changer for MDA, one that meets many of our key strategic objectives in a single move,' MDA president and CEO Friedmann told a conference call with analysts Wednesday.
"Friedmann said the addition of Space Systems/Loral Inc. will gives his Vancouver-area company 'critical mass' in the US market while enhancing global opportunities and also greatly diversifying its revenue base."
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