WAGE SUBSIDY EXTENDED
No surprise really to see this news considering the upsized Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy was one of the pillars of last week’s fiscal update, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today announced the program is being extended until December. In the update, the federal government pegged the CEWS’s cost at $82.3 billion. Canadian Federation of Independent Business CEO Dan Kelly was quick to call this “big news”, but also underscored the need for details: https://twitter.com/CFIB/status/1282704489489805313
ONTARIO TO UNVEIL STAGE 3 DETAILS
Doug Ford’s government will reportedly release details today about its plan for the third stage of reopening Ontario’s economy. The original framework indicated this would entail “opening all workplaces responsibly” and “further relaxing the restrictions on public gatherings” (with concerts and sporting events still off limits). We’ll aim to gather insight from business leaders with the most at stake.
NORDSTAR KNOCKOUT PUNCH
Looks like the tandem of Jordan Bitove and Paul Rivett will scoop up Torstar after all. The newspaper publisher announced over the weekend that Nordstar Capital agreed to raise its takeover offer to $0.74 per share from the original price of $0.63 after a competing bid surfaced last week. Importantly, Torstar said key shareholders indicated they would not support the rival offer, which was for $0.72 per share. Shareholders will soon have their say, with a special virtual meeting scheduled for July 21.
West Texas Intermediate crude has been down as much as two per cent as our Bloomberg News partners report OPEC+ is “leaning toward” easing production curbs, as planned, to 7.7 million barrels per day, from the current rate of 9.7m bpd. The issue will be addressed on Wednesday in a virtual meeting of the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee. The issue surfaces just a few days after the International Energy Agency cautioned against underestimating “the enormous uncertainties” facing the oil market as a result of COVID-19.
OTHER NOTABLE STORIES
-Ubisoft has ousted the head of its Canadian operations, Yannis Mallat, as part of a housecleaning stemming from what the video-game maker calls “recent allegations and accusations of misconduct and inappropriate behaviour.”
-WestJet updated its summer flight schedule today, including a 10 per cent expansion in service planned for next month. However, on a year-over-year basis, the August schedule is down 75 per cent.
-PepsiCo managed to beat second-quarter profit expectations even amid a significant deterioration in performance, including a 10% drop in North America beverage volume. The company said trends improved as COVID-19 restrictions eased, but cautioned “the environment has remained volatile and much uncertainty remains about the duration and long-term implications of the pandemic.”
-Some semiconductor M&A this morning: Analog Devices has agreed to buy Maxim Integrated Products in a US$21-billion all-stock deal.
-One of Canada’s big liquefied natural gas project has hit a speed bump. Pieridae Energy disclosed today that Kellogg Brown & Root Limited has changed its stance on negotiating a fixed-price contract to provide engineering, procurement, constriction and commissioning for the proposed Goldboro LNG facility in Nova Scotia. Pieridae’s CEO says the company will explore its legal options, while pointing out other firms have already expressed interest in providing those services.
-Notable earnings: PepsiCo
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