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BoC interest rate announcement, land acknowledgments : In The News for Oct. 27

·9 min read

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of Oct. 27 ...

What we are watching in Canada ...

The Bank of Canada is scheduled this morning to announce what will happen to its trendsetting interest rate, and provide an updated forecast for the domestic economy.

The bank's target overnight rate has been at 0.25 per cent since the onset of the pandemic, and governor Tiff Macklem has said increases won't arrive until later next year when economy has healed enough from COVID-19.

Earlier this month, Macklem suggested the economy wouldn't recover as quickly over that stretch as previously thought because of global supply-chain issues that have become more persistent than expected, alongside higher inflation rates.

That could be reflected in the bank's quarterly monetary policy report, which sets out the Bank of Canada's forecast for the economy and the pace of inflation over the next year.

Economists don't expect the bank to raise rates this week, but do look for the central bank to announce a rollback of bond purchases as part of its quantitative easing program.

BMO's Benjamin Reitzes says there is reason to believe the central bank will reshape the QE program to stop adding stimulus and rather maintain what's already there, noting Macklem recently gave a speech on the details of such a move.


Also this ...

Some First Nations people say the growing movement to incorporate land acknowledgments at events is a positive step but reconciliation efforts cannot end there.

The Manitoba government recently announced it's developing a consultation committee to help create a land acknowledgment to be read in the legislature.

And professional sports teams, including the Edmonton Oilers, have also started using land acknowledgments in their opening ceremonies.

Lance Cardinal, a member of Bigstone Cree Nation in Treaty 8 territory in Alberta, helped create the one the Oilers are using. He says he wanted to take a different approach to writing an acknowledgment, so he centred Indigenous voices.

Manitoba Treaty Commissioner Loretta Ross says her office gets multiple calls a week requesting help coming up with land acknowledgments.

The office has created a guideline but Ross says people must do their own research and work to sincerely create one.

Ross adds places that are using acknowledgments also need to reflect internally on what they can be doing to help advance reconciliation.


And this ...

Yukon's premier says there were multiple victims after the R-C-M-P responded to reports of an active shooter in the town of Faro but there is no longer a safety threat to the community.

In a release issued late Tuesday, Sandy Silver said that Mounties took decisive action and arrested a suspect.

It was not immediately clear if anyone died.

"This is truly a tragic situation," Silver said in the statement. "Our hearts go out to the families of the victims. We stand with the people of Faro during this extremely difficult time.''

He added a co-ordinated, inter-agency response is ensuring critical supports are being provided to residents and emergency responders, and the school community.

Jack Bowers, the incoming mayor of Faro, says a call about shots fired came in a little after noon and Faro immediately went into lockdown.

Leonard Faber, the outgoing mayor, expressed shock at what happened in the town, located about 360 kilometres by road northeast of Whitehorse.

He says everybody involved is going to be affected one way or another.


What we are watching in the U.S. ...

NEW YORK _ Donald Trump's social media company will get tens of millions in special bonus shares in a new publicly traded entity if it performs well, handing the former president possibly billions of dollars in paper wealth based on current stock prices, according to a prospectus filed with security regulators Tuesday.

The filing says Trump's social media company that aims to challenge Twitter and Facebook will be able to exercise warrants convertible to as many as 40 million shares of the new publicly traded company over three years. The exact number will depend on how high the stock in the company trades during that time, with the maximum number granted only if it trades at least at $30 a share or higher for a sustained period.

The bonus shares for his company would come on top of nearly 90 million shares worth possibly billions more.

"Trump and his fellow shareholders could walk away with a really big payday,'' said Jay Ritter, a professor at the University of Florida who specializes in initial public offerings, though he cautioned the stock could plunge. ``At some point the company needs to produce profits and given the competitive nature of the media industry, that could be a stretch.''

Trump launched his new company, Trump Media & Technology Group, last week as he unveiled plans for a new messaging app called ``Truth Social'' to rival Twitter and other social media that banned him following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

TMTG's plan is to become a publicly listed company through a merger with the publicly traded Digital World Acquisition Corp., a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, whose sole purpose is to acquire a private company and take it public.

Digital World's stock plunged 30 per cent Tuesday to close at $59.07. It had traded above $100 last week when Trump's social media company announced it would merge with it.


What we are watching in the rest of the world ...

CANBERRA, Australia _ Australia's opposition party said on Wednesday a looming election will be fought on greenhouse gas reduction targets as Prime Minister Scott Morrison comes under criticism from scientists over the modest goals he will take to a U.N. climate summit.

Morrison has been left no room to move on Australia's 2030 reduction target under a deal struck this week with his conservative government's rural-based junior coalition partner, the Nationals party.

The Nationals have agreed to support the ruling Liberal Party's target of net zero emissions by 2050 in return for Australia sticking to its six-year-old target of reducing emissions by only 26 per cent to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by the end of the decade.

The Nationals, once a farmers' party that has increasingly become an advocate for fossil fuel industries, has exerted its influence on Morrison as U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres lamented that a ``leadership gap'' was undermining the world's efforts to curb global warming.

The centre-left opposition Labor Party's spokesman on climate change and energy, Chris Bowen, said competing climate policies would become a battle line at the next election, which is due by May.

Morrison said the next election would provide ``a clear choice on who do people trust with the right economic plan'' to achieve net zero.

Morrison said he will take to the summit known as COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, projections that Australia will reduce its emissions by 35 per cent by 2030, exceeding his government's modest targets.

Climate scientists point out that this reduction would be achieved almost entirely by Australian state and territory governments that have committed to their own net zero targets.


On this day in 1995 ...

In the biggest political rally in Canadian history, thousands of people from across Canada arrived in Montreal to urge Quebecers to vote "No" in the sovereignty referendum. Days later, Quebec voters narrowly rejected sovereignty.


In entertainment ...

Montreal-born satirist Mort Sahl, who helped revolutionize stand-up comedy during the Cold War with his running commentary on politicians and current events and became a favourite of a new, restive generation of Americans, died Tuesday. He was 94.

His friend Lucy Mercer said that he died ``peacefully'' at his home in Mill Valley, California. The cause was ``old age,'' she said.

During an era when many comedians dressed in tuxedos and told mother-in-law jokes, Sahl faced his audiences in the '50s and `'60s wearing slacks, a sweater and an unbuttoned collar and carrying a rolled-up newspaper on which he had pasted notes for his act.

Reading news items as if seated across from you at the kitchen table, he made his inevitably cutting comments, often joining the laughter with a horsey bellow of his own and ending his routines by inquiring: ``Is there any group I haven't offended yet?''

``Every comedian who is not doing wife jokes has to thank him for that,'' actor-comedian Albert Brooks told The Associated Press in 2007. ``He really was the first, even before Lenny Bruce, in terms of talking about stuff, not just doing punch lines.''

Sahl took pride in having mocked every president from Dwight Eisenhower to Donald Trump, although he acknowledged he privately admired Democrat John F. Kennedy and counted Republican Ronald Reagan among his closest friends. Of President George W. Bush, he observed: ``He's born again, you know. Which would raise the inevitable question: If you were given the unusual opportunity to be born again, why would you come back as George Bush?''

``I don't have the image of myself as a comedian,'' Sahl himself said. ``I never said I was one. I just sort of tell the truth and everybody breaks up along the way.''



Iqaluit, Nunavut - The City of Iqaluit says an old underground spill is likely responsible for fuel that is contaminating the city's tap water.

City officials say in a news release that they found signs of a historic spill next to the water treatment plant in an inaccessible hole in the ground.

Iqaluit's water has been undrinkable since Oct. 12 when traces of fuel were found in the water treatment plant.

The city says testing is now being done to confirm the spill is the source of the contamination.

The city adds that it has reported the spill to the Nunavut government and has hired a professional firm to clean it up.

There is still no timeline for when the city's residents will be able to drink Iqaluit's tap water again.


This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 27, 2021

The Canadian Press

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