Canadian telecom Rogers is suffering a major outage affecting landline phones, cellular connections, and internet connectivity throughout Canada that started early this morning. Downdetector listed thousands of reports for the issues that flooded in as people started to get up around 5AM ET and couldn’t get online.
Rogers first addressed the outage in a tweet from its official support account just before 9AM ET and then went silent for a couple of hours. Its most recent statement about the incident is this tweet that says technical teams are working to restore services “alongside our global technology partners, and are making progress.” There is still no ETA for restoration, even after services have been available for about 12 hours nationwide.
Our technical teams are working to restore our services alongside our global technology partners, and are making progress. pic.twitter.com/BsufX2Q92Q
— RogersHelps (@RogersHelps) July 8, 2022
Cloudflare Radar shows communication between its load-sharing network and Rogers in Canada exhibiting its normal nightly pattern before dropping to essentially zero at around 3–4AM ET and registering a flat line ever since. At that same time, there was a massive spike in BGP (Border Gateway Protocol) announcements for the network that indicate changes in routing.
In a blog post published Friday afternoon, Cloudflare personnel speculated that the outage is the result of an internal error at Rogers, as opposed to a cyberattack or other cause. They cited that pattern of BGP announcements, noting that with the Rogers network now failing to announce its presence, the rest of the internet can’t find it. BGP is a fundamental part of the technology that helps move information from one place on the internet to another, and a problem with BGP routing information was the cause of a massive Facebook network outage last fall.
NOTICE: Accessing My Service Canada Account with GCKey and using multi-factor authentication with text or voice message are temporarily unavailable due to an Internet outage across Canada. Thank you for your patience.
— Service Canada (@ServiceCanada_E) July 8, 2022
Passport offices and Canada’s tax-collecting Revenue Agency are among the government services that are unavailable today due to the outage. Both agencies also warned users the outage is cutting off multifactor authentication codes sent by voice or text message, so people who are logged out may not be able to log in at this time.
Even the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), which regulates broadcasting and telecoms, says its phones aren’t working due to the outage.
Internet network disruption tracker NetBlocks shared real-time data showing Canada’s national connectivity has dropped to just 75 percent of its normal levels.
ℹ️ Update: The internet and telecommunication outage in #Canada is ongoing, with a quarter of the country’s observable connectivity currently knocked out; metrics show high impact to Rogers/Fido and a number of smaller network providers pic.twitter.com/HbcoM7PRKB
— NetBlocks (@netblocks) July 8, 2022
A report by CBC News noted Rogers subsidiary Fido is having problems, too. The article says problems have affected card payment processing and ATMs across Canada. A CBC radio station in Kitchener, Ontario, is also offline, and some telephone services for Ottawa’s transit agency have been knocked out. Pictures from Toronto show people crammed into coffee shops or heading to the library to access Wi-Fi now that their other options are offline.
TekSavvy customer service has told customers the outage extends to “Ontario, Quebec and the Eastern Provinces,” with no ETA for resolution, while the CBC reports that Thunder Bay operator Tbaytel says the Rogers outage is nationwide.
Toronto police tweeted early in the morning after some people in the city experienced connection issues calling 911. “The Rogers Network is experiencing some technical difficulties,” said the Toronto Police Operations Twitter account. “We are working to resolve these issues.” In a follow-up tweet, the police confirmed their 911 center is operational and advised anyone who has to call to stay on the line if they connect and to retry calls if they don’t.
INTERAC e-Transfer services are unavailable at most financial institutions, impacting the ability to send and receive payments. We are waiting for updates from Rogers on their resolution.
— INTERAC (@INTERAC) July 8, 2022
Some may be having issues with CRA multi-factor authentication, due to technical difficulties with their mobile provider. In order to avoid being locked out of your account, if you don’t immediately receive your one-time passcode during the log in process, please don’t try again.
— Canada Revenue Agency (@CanRevAgency) July 8, 2022
Update 9:52AM ET: Added Bank of Montreal information
Update 11:20AM ET: Noted ongoing outage, added information from Cloudflare Radar, TekSavvy, and Tbaytel
Update 11:33AM ET: Added statement from Rogers
Update 12:40PM ET: Added latest update from NetBlocks
Update 1:31PM ET: Added additional information about Interac banking network, — thanks, mbarriault.
Update 2:13PM ET: Added information about CRTC, passport offices, and tax services outage.
Update 3:39PM ET: Added Cloudflare notes about BGP as a possible cause of the outage, as well as Rogers’ statement that it is “making progress” in fixing the issue.
Fill up today! Here's when gas prices will rise seven cents a litre in Ottawa – CTV News Ottawa
Ottawa motorists will want to fill up the gas tank on Saturday, before prices start to rise at the end of the weekend.
Gas prices dropped to their lowest level in six months at Ottawa stations on Saturday, at $1.599 a litre. According to ottawagasprices.com, some stations in Ottawa were selling gas for $1.54 a litre.
Prices have dropped 20 cents a litre in Ottawa since Thursday.
However, Canadians for Affordable Energy President Dan McTeague is telling motorists to fill up the gas tank today.
McTeague forecasts prices will rise seven cents a litre in Ottawa and across Ontario on Sunday to 166.8 cents a litre.
Gas prices in Ottawa have dropped 56 cents a litre since hitting a record high of 215.9 cents a litre on June 11. A drop in demand and rising fears about a recession drove down the price of oil. The Ontario government cut the gas tax rate on July 1 from 14.7 cents per litre to 9 cents per litre.
Speaking on Newstalk 580 CFRA’s Ottawa at Work on Friday, McTeague said the recent drop in gas prices is welcome, but “don’t expect it to last.”
“The markets, I think, are overestimating the amount of demand drop we’ve seen in the United States and underestimating the severest supply shortage that we’re having,” McTeague said.
Pandemic benefits were too generous with businesses, stringent with workers: experts – CP24 Toronto's Breaking News
Nojoud Al Mallees, The Canadian Press
Published Saturday, August 6, 2022 11:21AM EDT
Benefits rolled out at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic allowed vulnerable Canadians to stay healthy while maintaining an income, but business supports were excessive and show the outsized influence of business groups on public policy, economists say.
Nearly two and a half years ago, the federal government faced an unprecedented task of shutting down the economy to slow the rapid spread of COVID-19. That shutdown led to a series of pandemic relief benefits aimed at softening the blow to workers and businesses, with the two most prominent programs being the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.
Recent analysis from Statistics Canada based on census data shows two-thirds of Canadian adults received pandemic benefits in 2020, with these benefits cushioning income losses and reducing inequality.
Previous analysis from the federal statistics agency also found that, as was expected, usage of the wage subsidy program correlated with a lower probability of closure and fewer employee reductions.
While there was little time to spend on crafting the benefits and fine-tuning the details in March 2020, economists are now assessing the successes and failures of these programs in retrospect.
City of New York University economics professor Miles Corak, who has written analyses on these programs, says any evaluation needs to account for the uncertainty people and governments were facing at the time and the urgent need to keep people healthy.
That said, Corak said while the CERB was “terribly successful,” the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy was a “huge failure.”
“The Canada Emergency Response Benefit got money out the door quickly in time to keep people at home, which is what we wanted to do to save lives,” he said.
On the other hand, Corak said the CEWS “came too late, it wasn’t well-targeted and dramatically over-insured (businesses).”
The CERB was quickly announced in March 2020 and $2,000 monthly to Canadians who lost income because of the pandemic shutdown. That was followed soon after by the CEWS, which subsidized businesses’ employee wages by 75 per cent in hopes of encouraging companies to hold on to their staff.
Corak says that by the time the wage subsidy was introduced, many businesses had already parted ways with their employees.
Another source of criticism for the wage subsidy program was that it subsidized wages for all workers at affected businesses, rather than simply those whose jobs were at risk of being lost, making it especially costly.
Jennifer Robson, an associate professor of political management at Carleton University, also pointed to the wage subsidy program as being unsuccessful. Robson said businesses that would have otherwise closed down for reasons unrelated to the pandemic remained artificially afloat because of the wage subsidy.
“These were not businesses that were going to return to profitability,” Robson said.
Statistics Canada data shows the number of business closures spiked dramatically in April 2020, but a sharp decline followed, bringing monthly closures to a lower level than pre-pandemic.
About 31,000 businesses closed in August 2020, while nearly 40,000 had closed in February 2020.
In hindsight, Corak said the wage subsidy program should have been smaller in scope and targeted to larger businesses with specialized needs where it would be important for companies to hold on to the same employees, such as the airline sector.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business has said the wage subsidy was “crucial” for small business owners and noted in April this year that only two of five of its members reported being back to normal sales.
Adrienne Vaupshas, the press secretary for Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, said in a statement the focus of the government at the onset of the pandemic was to protect jobs and ensure a strong economic recovery.
“Today we have recovered 114 per cent of the jobs that were lost during the darkest months of the pandemic,” Vaupshas said.
In contrast to what some economists have characterized as excessively generous supports for businesses, some low-income Canadians have experienced clawbacks to social assistance benefits because they collected CERB. The Canada Revenue Agency is also hoping to recoup benefits paid out to over 400,000 Canadians whose eligibility was questioned.
In response, anti-poverty group Campaign 2000 has called for CERB amnesty.
Corak said while it’s reasonable to ask those who fraudulently collected benefits to pay them back, businesses should be held to the same standard.
“The concern I would have is the asymmetry in this response between individuals and businesses,” Corak said.
The CFIB has called for more loan forgiveness for small businesses who accessed loans through the Canada Emergency Business Account. The federal government is already offering partial loan forgiveness if repayments are made by the end of 2023.
Robson said when it comes to shaping public policy, business interest groups have well-resourced public relations teams to further their interests.
“There is nothing like that for individual low-wage workers,” said Robson.
Corak noted that at the start of the pandemic, there was a focus on the role of front-line workers, but with time, this shifted to small businesses.
“I think the small business lobby was very effective in informing individual MPs and putting pressure on cabinet and the government to respond in a way that many unseen and unheard mothers, fathers workers and families just didn’t have that same voice,” Corak said.
The danger of the wage subsidy program, Corak said, is that it sets a precedent for providing excessive subsidies to businesses and thereby stifling innovation.
“We’re almost moving towards a basic income for small business rather than a basic income for individuals,” he said.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 6, 2022.
'Head-scratcher:' Economists weigh in on Canada's surprise job loss – Yahoo Canada Finance
Canada’s July jobs reading caught economists by surprise with a loss of 30,600 positions rather than an expected gain of 15,000 for the month.
Despite the negative reading coming on the heels of a still larger decline in June, the unemployment rate stuck to its historic low of 4.9 per cent based, according to Statistics Canada, on a drop in Canada’s participation rate.
“Canada’s labour market is not in disarray,” said National Bank economists Kyle Dahms and Alexandra Ducharme, in their jobs commentary, noting that year-to-date, the private sector has added 110,000 positions. The pair said they continue to see “resilience in the Canadian economy” making them outliers among other big bank analysts.
After digesting July’s numbers, most economists appear to have taken away two narratives:
The Bank of Canada won’t be deterred from raising rates further, and possibly with another bigger than normal hike.
July’s jobs reading hints at an economy that is beginning to “lose steam.”
Here are the economists in their own words:
Rishi Sondhi, TD Economics
“That’s two in a row in terms of weak headline jobs prints, and employment has now averaged an 11k decline over the past three months. This is consistent with our view that economic growth will soften in the second half of the year. The details skewed to the softer end in July, as full-time employment accounted for a larger share of the overall jobs decline than in June, and hours worked also fell. The latter is particularly notable as it could signal a soft print for monthly GDP, following flat growth in May and a sub-trend gain in June (based on Statcan’s preliminary estimate).”
Stephen Brown, Capital Economics
“The second consecutive monthly decline in employment will raise a few eyebrows at the Bank of Canada but, with the unemployment rate unchanged at a record low and wage growth still strong, we doubt it will prevent the Bank from hiking its policy rate by a further 100 bp at the next two meetings…. While the increase in average hourly earnings was a little lower than we expected, at 0.4% m/m, that gain is still too high for comfort in terms of meeting the Bank’s 2% CPI inflation target. At the margin, the July LFS may tilt the odds a bit toward a 50 bp rate hike in September rather than a 75 bp one, but we doubt it will be the deciding factor.”
Andrew Grantham, CIBC Economics
“The Canadian employment figures were somewhat of a head-scratcher again in July, with employment falling for a second consecutive month but the unemployment rate remaining historically low. The 31K decline in jobs came against consensus expectations for a 15K gain, and added to the 43K decline in the prior month. However, a two-tick decline in the participation rate meant that the jobless rate remained at 4.9%. Job losses were strangely concentrated in the services sector, including wholesale & retail, education and health. With some of those sectors reporting high vacancy rates, labour supply rather than demand appears to be the main issue. That said, the major difference between today’s report and last month’s is that wage growth unexpectedly decelerated (to 5.4% y/y from 5.6% and against consensus expectations for 5.9%) although we always caution that the LFS wage series is extremely volatile month/month. While today’s figures muddy the waters further for policymakers, the Bank of Canada will likely focus on the historic low unemployment rate and still strong wage growth to justify another non-standard rate hike at its next meeting.”
Carrie Freeston, RBC Economics
“In the months ahead we will begin to see the economy lose steam. We are already observing jobless claims rising South of the border, as U.S. labour demand begins to cool. Canada will not be far behind. With the Bank of Canada having raised the overnight rate by 225 basis points (to 2.5%) since March, and at least another 75 basis points slated for the fall, inflation pressures will ease. And labour markets are expected to cool. Our forecast calls for the unemployment rate to begin to trend higher in the coming months and into 2023.”
Douglas Porter, BMO Economics
“Canada’s job market is clearly losing momentum in a hurry, likely due to both a marked cooling in the broader economy but also because a lack of available workers. The downward drift in the participation rate, especially for the 15-64 group, is worth watching closely, with the potential to tighten the labour market further. For the Bank of Canada, the takeaway will be that while growth is clearly cooling, conditions remain drum-tight and wages are stirring. We believe this backdrop is consistent with another rate hike at the September meeting, but of a less aggressive nature than the mega 100 bp move in July. We look for a 50 bp hike at that time.”
Marc Desormeaux, Desjardins Economics
“July’s data were well below the consensus projections, and as such shaved our call for Q3-2022 real Canadian GDP growth to just below 1% (q/q saar). Decelerating wage gains suggest that some progress has been made in the fight against inflation, but the rate of hourly earnings growth continues to track prices closely. Accordingly, while we think inflation may have peaked and have noted previously that the Canadian economy is historically sensitive to interest rate increases, we believe the Bank of Canada will put more weight on the extremely tight labour market and raise rates by 50 bps at its September meeting.”
Kyle Dahms/Alexandra Ducharme, National Bank Economics
Canada lost 31K jobs in July, a second consecutive monthly decline. Despite this development, Canada’s labour market is not in disarray. July’s losses were concentrated in public sector jobs. This sector indeed suffered its worst loss outside of a the pandemic since 1976 (-51K), a perplexing development considering the state of public finances at both the federal and provincial levels. Private sector employment, while also down in July, is still up 110K year-to-date with continued contribution from construction and manufacturing during the month. Despite the July decline, the unemployment rate remained unchanged at its lowest level since 1970 due to a 0.2 pp drop in the participation rate, a third decline in four months. With the unemployment rate remaining historically low, we still see resilience in the Canadian domestic economy. This robustness is also confirmed by the evolution of the wages of permanent employees, which grew 5.4% over the last twelve months, down from June’s 5.6% print but still historically high. At this juncture, the Bank of Canada is still on track to hike at its next meeting on the 7th of September with labour shortages continuing to persist according to the latest figures by the CFIB (Canadian Federation of Independent Business).
Investment industry faces widening skills gap around big data and ESG – The Globe and Mail
Many federal government employees balking at returning to offices – CBC News
UK's government investment fund largely backed 'zombie businesses' – Financial Times
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Europe kicks off vaccination programs | All media content | DW | 27.12.2020 – Deutsche Welle
Global Media Markets, 2015-2020, 2020-2025F, 2030F – TV and Radio Broadcasting, Film and Music, Information Services, Web Content, Search Portals And Social Media, Print Media, & Cable – GlobeNewswire
News22 hours ago
South Korea embarks on its first mission to the moon
Sports9 hours ago
Rafael Nadal announces he will not be playing at the Canadian Open
Art8 hours ago
Nanaimo lawn bowler turns sport's 'bowls' into art | CTV News – CTV News VI
Sports17 hours ago
Canada beats Sweden to claim gold in Hlinka Gretzky Cup – Sportsnet.ca
Economy16 hours ago
Charting the Global Economy: Job Growth in US Powers Ahead – BNN
News17 hours ago
Canadian Blood Services urges donors to keep appointments as blood supplies reach new low – CBC.ca
News21 hours ago
Firearm used to kill three people in Montreal was illegally acquired police say
Art20 hours ago
Graffiti Jam at mural festival celebrates street art, community – Vancouver Sun