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LRT: Exhausting commute has night shift worker considering a car – Ottawa Sun



The post-LRT bus service change cancelled one of the bus routes Rob Maybee used to be able to take, and reduced service on another, in addition to the extra transfer and leg of train travel for which he now has to account.

—This week, this newspaper decided to spend several days during rush hour along the Confederation Line, talking to passengers and riding the rails. The following pieces profile just a few of the countless transit users with stories to tell about commuting on the Confederation Line. If you have one of your own that you’d like to share, please get in touch at 

When Rob Maybee wakes up for his commute to work, he’s usually managed to catch about five hours of shut-eye.

The overnight shift worker rises around 2:30 p.m. to catch a Route 40 bus from Elmvale Acres to St. Laurent Station at 4 p.m. Once at St. Laurent, he takes a light-rail train to the Confederation Line’s eastern terminus at Blair Station. He and hundreds of others hop off the train and hustle down to the street-level bus platform in the hopes of claiming a spot on one of the eastbound buses that are often packed to the brim, forcing would-be passengers to wait for the next bus on their route to show up — if it does at all.

While most commuters at Blair are finishing their workday and heading home, Maybee is gearing up for a 10 to 12-hour shift as a supervisor at a Trim Road manufacturing facility. Once he manages to board a bus for the final leg of his commute, he’ll hopefully make it to work at least a half hour before his 6:30 p.m. start so he has time to prepare his staffing plan for the shift. When he finishes his workday at 5 a.m., it’s time for another 90-plus minutes in transit — if he’s lucky — to get home, sleep, and do it all over again.

“I’m out of the house upwards almost 15, 16 hours a day,” said Maybee, 43. “You run on five hours sleep — by the end of the week, I’m just exhausted. My weekend’s pretty much shot, trying to catch up.”

It wasn’t always like this. Before the September opening of the Confederation Line, Maybee said his commute took two buses and 45 minutes, even on the busiest day. The post-LRT bus service change cancelled one of the bus routes he used to be able to take, and reduced service on another, in addition to the extra transfer and leg of train travel for which he now has to account.

“It’s a huge difference,” said Maybee. And he feels it. With a job where he’s overseeing multiple people and spends most of the night on his feet, five hours of sleep isn’t really cutting it.

“I’m sure one of these days it will come to — I miss something major, or I may not even wake up for work just because I’m so tired.”

In addition to his sleep schedule, his new commuting routine is affecting his wallet. Once or twice a month, whether due to bus cancellations or LRT service outages, he has to ditch transit and call an Uber to get to work on time.

“I’ve got staff that are waiting for me,” he said. “I can’t call them like an hour before to say, ‘I’m not coming because of the trains.’ I have to go to work, I have to suck it up and pay the 20 bucks for an Uber.”

Now spending about $50 a month on ride-hailing services on top of his transit pass, Maybee said he’s compelled to consider an option he can’t really afford – buying a vehicle.

Born and raised in Ottawa, he’s mostly relied on transit since he was a teenager. But, in recent months, the prospect of ditching OC Transpo has grown increasingly tempting.

“I’m getting tired of dealing with this,” Maybee said. “It’d be a lot easier to just get a bit more sleep and be able to get to work every day.”


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TD Bank CFO Ahmed to head securities unit, move seen as CEO succession play



TD Bank Group on Thursday named Chief Financial Officer Riaz Ahmed chief executive of its securities unit and head of wholesale banking, a move some investors interpreted as a sign he will succeed CEO Bharat Masrani.

For Ahmed, 58, the change marks a return to his TD roots. He began his career at the bank in 1996 as an investment banker in the securities division, following which he served as its CFO and chief administrative officer. He has been part of TD Bank‘s executive team for nine years, and CFO for over five.

“Cross-training in the capital markets role … increases the likelihood of (Ahmed) succeeding Masrani when he retires, but I doubt it would be soon, as that would create unnecessary turnover atop TD Securities,” said Brian Madden, portfolio manager at Goodreid Investment Counsel.

“Maybe Masrani announces his retirement next year (or the following) and leaves early in 2023” or 2024.

Masrani’s compensation arrangements anticipated his retirement in 2020, TD said in its 2019 shareholders meeting proxy circular. But he was granted stock options worth C$1.9 million ($1.5 million), vesting in five years, on the condition that he remain available to serve as CEO throughout that period.

Ahmed replaces Bob Dorrance, who will retire on Sept. 1 after about 16 years at the bank, Canada’s second-biggest lender by market value said in a statement.

When asked about TD’s succession plans, a spokesperson said: “Today we are celebrating Bob Dorrance’s incredible career and accomplishments, and the appointment of top executives to critical, leadership roles.”

At a time when diversity, particularly in executive and board ranks, has come under increased scrutiny, Ahmed’s appointment as CEO would mean TD, the only one of Canada’s six biggest lenders to have a non-Caucasian at its helm, would retain that aspect.

Ahmed’s appointment comes after TD’s wholesale banking unit recorded an 8% revenue decline in the second quarter from a year ago, contributing to the bank’s overall underperformance versus some rivals.

Kelvin Tran, currently executive vice president for enterprise finance, will replace Ahmed as finance chief.

Dorrance, who has headed TD Securities since 2005, will stay on as chairman of TD Securities and serve as special adviser to Masrani.

TD shares were flat at C$87.12 on Thursday afternoon, compared with a 0.2% gain in the Toronto stock index. The shares are up 21% this year, versus a 15% gain in the benchmark.

($1 = 1.2303 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Nichola Saminather in Toronto; Additional reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in BengaluruEditing by Nick Zieminski and Matthew Lewis)

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AIB agrees to life and pensions joint-venture with Canada Life



Allied Irish Banks on Wednesday said it would form a joint venture with Canada life as it seeks to plug gaps in its life, savings and wealth products.

The joint venture will be equally owned by Canada Life, a subsidiary of Great-West Lifeco Inc.

“The move to create this joint venture is aligned with AIB’s stated ambition to complete its customerproduct suite and diversify income,” AIB said in a statement.

“Through this strategic initiative AIB intends to offer customers a range of life protection, pensions, savings and investment options enhanced by integrated digital solutions withcontinued access to our qualified financial advisors.”

The Irish lender highlighted Canada Life’s “deep experience” of the Irish bancassurance market through Irish Life Assurance, which is also a subsidiary of Great-West Lifeco.

AIB currently operates under a tied agency distribution agreement with Irish Life, and will enter into a new distribution agreement with the new joint venture company.

Chief Executive Colin Hunt highlighted the need to plug gaps in AIB’s life, savings and wealth products when he set out the bank’s medium-term targets last December.

AIB expects its equity investment in the joint venture will be around 90 million euros ($107.51 million), equating to around 10bps of CET1.($1 = 0.8372 euros)

(Reporting by Graham Fahy;Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

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Interac: Canada’s Latest Payment Solution Phenomenon



Few can argue that digital payment methods aren’t central to modern-day society. In recent times, increasing numbers of payment solutions have come to the forefront, offering consumers more choice regarding their transaction preferences. Canada, in particular, has embraced a wide-ranging selection of secure, forward-thinking options. Of those available throughout the country, Interac has piqued the interests of local consumers the most. So, let’s look at why this payment solution is an especially popular option throughout Canada. 

Usable Across Various Markets 

It speaks volumes about Interac’s versatility in that it’s usable across a variety of different industries. Since being founded in 1984, the Canadian interbank network has become integral to numerous markets, including local air travel. Air Canada, which has been operating since 1937, has expanded their accepted payment methods, and now passengers can pay for their flights using Interac. According to the airline’s official website, the Interac Online service lets consumers pay for their tickets via the internet directly from their bank account. 

Not only that, but Interac is also available at Walmart. In November 2020, the two organizations partnered together to expand in-store and online payment options. Walmart has adapted well to the digital trend, with American Banker reporting that they’ve opened Interac Flash sale points throughout their stores. 

Source: Unsplash

Aside from the above, Interac has also taken the digital world by storm. Following its rapid rise to prominence, the solution has also altered the online casino industry, with platforms like Genesis Casino now accepting the transaction type. The provider, which features Interac Canadian casino options, uses the popular payment method to enhance transaction speeds of deposits and withdrawals, as well as security. Players can use Interac Online and Interac e-Transfer to make deposits or withdrawals from their desktops or mobiles as the platform is fully optimized. 

A Reflection of Modern-Day Society 

In recent times, Interac recorded a 55 percent increase in transactions between April and August 2020 compared to the same period the previous year, as per BNN Bloomberg. These figures somewhat reflect the current state of e-Commerce and modern consumerism. Following the rise of Interac and other payment methods, it’s now less troublesome for consumers to complete in-store and online purchases. 

Source: PxHere

There’s an ever-growing perception that land-based businesses need to adapt within the digital era and accept forward-thinking payment methods. According to Cision, Interac is of utmost importance to the Canadian economy, and a year-on-year increase in Interac Debit payments of 333 percent reflects that. Not only that, but Interac e-Transfer payments are growing at 52 percent each year. This Interac-oriented trend appears unlikely to fade over the coming years, with the network being selected as the country’s provider for a new real-time payment system, as per Lexology. 

Consumer Habits are Changing 

There can be no doubt that consumerism has changed drastically over the past decade. The popularity of Interac suggests that a cashless future may be on the horizon, with increasing numbers of shoppers enjoying the security of online payment methods. While it’s currently unclear if that will happen, Interac appears to be prevalent for the long run.

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