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BlackBerry reports Q3 loss; software, services revenue climbs –



WATERLOO, Ont. – BlackBerry Ltd. lost US$32 million in its latest quarter compared with a profit of US$59 million in the same quarter last year as its revenue climbed higher.

The security software company, which keeps its books in U.S. dollars, says the loss amounted to seven cents per diluted share compared with a loss of a penny per share a year ago.

Revenue in the quarter ended Nov. 30 totalled $267 million, up from $226 million.

The growth came as the company’s software and services revenue grew to $262 million, up 21 per cent compared with a year ago.

On an adjusted basis, BlackBerry says it earned $17 million or three cents per share in its latest quarter. Adjusted revenue totalled $280 million, up 23 per cent from a year ago.

Analysts on average had expected a profit of two cents per share and $276 million in revenue, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

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Stellantis cutting 1800 jobs at Windsor Assembly Plant – CTV News Windsor



Windsor, Ont. –

Stellantis says it is cutting its Windsor Assembly Plant down to one shift next spring in a move that will mean about 1,800 lost jobs.

The company, formerly known as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, says the move comes as the automotive industry faces significant headwinds including the semiconductor shortage and the effects of COVID-19.

The cut from two shifts comes after Stellantis cut the third shift at the minivan plant in 2020 at a loss of about 1,500 jobs.

Stellantis says it will cut the second shift beginning in the spring, but reaffirmed it’s commitment in the 2020 collective agreement with the local Unifor union to spend upwards of $1.5 billion at the plant.

The auto industry has been grappling with a significant shortage of computer chips, pushing auto companies to prioritize high-margin vehicles like pickup trucks and SUVs and cutting back production of sedans and minivans.

The Windsor plant produces the Chrysler Pacifica, Chrysler Voyager and Chrysler Grand Caravan.

Official statement from UNIFOR Local 444

“The company served the union official notice late this afternoon that they we will be moving to a one-shift operation at the Windsor assembly plant on April 17, 2022. We will be meeting with the company in the coming days to explore ALL other options, however official notice has been given. The company reiterated its commitment to the bargained investment and the three-shift operation in the future. We will be getting more specifics over the course of the weekend and the upcoming days.”

Official statement from Stellantis

“The global automotive industry continues to face significant headwinds such as the persisting semiconductor shortage and the extended effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to these factors, Stellantis will adjust production operations at its Windsor Assembly Plant (WAP) in Canada. Beginning in the spring of 2022, WAP will transition to a one-shift operation. The company reaffirms its WAP investment commitment outlined in the 2020 Collective Agreement of up to $1.5B CAD.”

—With files from CTV Windsor’s Angelo Aversa

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Bitcoin tops $60,000, nears record high, on growing U.S. ETF hopes



Bitcoin hit $60,000 for the first time in six months on Friday, nearing its all-time high, as hopes grew that U.S. regulators would allow a futures-based exchange-traded fund (ETF), a move likely to open the path to wider investment in digital assets.

Cryptocurrency investors have been waiting for approval of the first U.S.  ETF for Bitcoin , with bets on such a move fuelling its recent rally.

The world’s biggest cryptocurrency rose 4.5% to its highest level since Apr. 17, and was last at $59,290. It has risen by more than half since Sept. 20 and closing in on its record high of $64,895 hit in April.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is set to allow the first U.S. bitcoin futures ETF to begin trading next week, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday.

Such a move would open a new path for investors to gain exposure to the emerging asset, traders and analysts said.

“ETFs open up a raft of avenues for people to gain exposure, and there will be a swift move to these structures,” said Charles Hayter, CEO of data firm CryptoCompare, which tracks ETF products.

“It reduces the frictions for investors to gain exposure and gives traditional funds room to use the asset for diversification purposes.”

Bitcoin’s moves on Friday were spurred by a tweet from the SEC’s investor education office urging investors to weigh risks and benefits of investing in funds that holds bitcoin futures contracts, said Ben Caselin of Asia-based crypto exchange AAX.


Graphic: Bitcoin on the rise


Several fund managers, including the VanEck Bitcoin Trust, ProShares, Invesco, Valkyrie and Galaxy Digital Funds have applied to launch bitcoin ETFs in the United States.

Crypto ETFs have launched this year in Canada and Europe, growing in popularity amid surging interest in digital assets.

SEC Chair Gary Gensler has previously said the crypto market involves many tokens which may be unregistered securities and leaves prices open to manipulation and millions of investors vulnerable to risks.

Citing people familiar with the matter, the Bloomberg report said proposals by ProShares and Invesco, based on futures contracts, were filed under mutual fund rules that Gensler has said provide “significant investor protections”.

The SEC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report.

“It’s one of the final frontiers for mandate access,” said Joseph Edwards, head of research at crypto broker Enigma Securities.

“Plenty of Americans in particular have strings attached to how they deploy a lot of their wealth. It allows bitcoin to get in on the sorts of windfall that keep U.S. equities as consistently strong as they are.”


(Reporting by Tom Wilson in London and Alun John in Hong Kong, and Mrinmay Dey and Shubham Kalia in Bengaluru; editing by Alexander Smith and Jason Neely)

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Pharmacies doling out Moderna and Pfizer in pilot project just before younger kids expected to be OKed for vaccine – CTV News Vancouver




Dozens of pharmacies in B.C. are delivering mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, yet still don’t know if they will be part of the immunization plan when it comes to kids aged five to 11.

At the Fort St John pharmacy, demand for the Moderna shot isn’t exactly overwhelming, but increasing every week, according to pharmacist Michael Ortynsky. He says aside from some paperwork, things have run smoothly, thanks in large part to specialized vaccine fridges.

“It’s checked every day, twice a day, as a minimum and it’s connected to an alarm if the temperature rises above five degrees,” he explained in an interview with CTV News.

Once refrigerated, the vaccine can last up to 30 days.

Several Northern pharmacies have been able to distribute the mRNA vaccine since late August. In the Lower Mainland, 54 pharmacies are doing the same — many administering Pfizer — as part of a pilot project. According to the ministry, they’re delivering on average 4,000 doses each week.

Yet despite two months of experience, it’s still unclear whether pharmacies will be part of the vaccine rollout for kids aged five to 11 who are expected to get the green light for a jab next month.

On Tuesday, Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters, “There will be some pharmacies that will be involved, but also health authority clinics in different settings.”

Pharmacists did provide AstraZeneca but B.C. has so far resisted a wide-scale approach involving pharmacies.

A statement from Angie Gaddy, communications director for the BC Pharmacy Association, says in part, ‘We are in discussions with the government on planning for mRNA vaccines in B.C. pharmacies and what it will take to roll out on a large-scale basis.”

Dr. Brian Conway with the Vancouver Infectious Diseases Centre is encouraging government to let go of control and “democratize” the system.

“There are over 300,000 children aged five to 11 in this province. That’s not a small task getting them all vaccinated, ” he told CTV News.

Conway thinks it will be essential to get as many kids immunized as quickly as possible. As of Wednesday nearly 89 per cent of those aged 12 and older had at a least one shot of vaccine. It’s not been enough to slow transmission, which has been rising in children.

Earlier this week — Dr. Henry ruled out using doctors’ offices. Conway thinks that’s a mistake pointing out parents will have questions.

“And as soon as they’re finished asking their questions and they’re decide to be going ahead with the vaccination of that child, that vaccination should be immediately available,” added Dr. Conway.

In the Peace, Ortynsky agrees saying he spends time answering questions.

“My experience is there’s a lot of misinformation out there and we’ll gladly take the time to talk to people about it,” said Ortynsky.

He adds the extended hours of operation – beyond typical clinic hours – allows pharmacists to reach more people.

“I know most of the pharmacists I communicate with during the week are more than willing to, you know, accommodate the patient’s needs to give them this really important vaccine, when they need it.”

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