Connect with us

Economy

US stock futures fall as uncertainty around the economy persists – CNN

Published

on


Dow (INDU) futures dropped 346 points, or 1.5%. S&P 500 (SPX) futures also fell 1.5%, and Nasdaq (COMP) futures were down 1.3%.
Last week again brought painful economic data. More than 30 million Americans have now filed initial unemployment claims since the middle of March. Economists surveyed by Refinitiv expect the unemployment rate to have hit 16.1% last month, which would be its highest level since 1939.
The upcoming week is likely to provide greater clarity on the unemployment picture in the country, as the US government releases its latest jobs report on Friday.
Over the past week, many companies also warned investors of challenging times ahead as they reported earnings for the first three months of 2020. While many US companies only really began feeling the effects of coronavirus during the final month of the first quarter, the pandemic and the economic crisis resulting from it will weigh on companies throughout the June quarter, and likely beyond.
There are also questions about the likelihood of any large scale reopening of the economy anytime soon. While some states began lifting coronavirus lockdown restrictions in recent days, many business owners are nonetheless keeping their doors shut for now, and consumers may be wary, too.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Economy

COVID-19 is hastening the green economy, and we are far behind – CBC.ca

Published

on


In Newfoundland and Labrador, we immediately need both jobs and training for workers who want to transition out of oil, writes contributor Lori Lee Oates. (Submitted)

This week Premier Dwight Ball, Minister of Natural Resources Siobhan Coady, new Memorial University president Vianne Timmons and two industry associations held a news conference. They called on the federal government to provide subsidies for oil companies in the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore.

Their message demonstrated a fundamental misunderstanding of what has to happen to meet Paris Accord emission reduction targets for 2030. It also ignored the research on where the global economy is going, as other nations prepare green economic stimulus packages.

In May 2018, the International Labour Organization released a report which estimated that 24-million new jobs would be created in the move to a green economy, by 2030.

It also predicted a loss of six million jobs in the oil sector. However, that represents a net gain of 18-million jobs that will be created by this fundamental shift. Green energy is simply more job intensive than the fossil fuel energy sector and a far better bet for the economic future of this province.

What this means for Newfoundland and Labrador is that we need to take steps immediately to ensure we take full advantage of the green economic recovery. We also need to increase training opportunities.

Like any revolution, those who get there first will seize the high ground and become the new centres of excellence. Green energy services are a product that we will be able to export globally, and they will be in high demand for decades to come.

This is an opportunity for us to fully enter the global service economy for the first time in our history.

‘Green energy services are a product that we will be able to export globally, and they will be in high demand for decades to come,’ writes Lori Lee Oates. (Patrick Pleul/dpa via Associated Press)

The writing is on the wall

For some years now, financial analysts such as former Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have warned of the dangers of ignoring climate change in financial planning.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hastened the move to a green economy. This is likely the best opportunity we will ever have, as a planet, to get on track to meet greenhouse gas emission reduction targets, as outlined by the 2015 Paris Accord.

Even before the pandemic, the IMF was warning against subsidizing the oil industry. A 2019 paper maintained that we must factor in the cost of external factors like natural disasters and health care to calculate the true cost of fossil fuel subsidies.

Furthermore, the IMF found that there was a net economic gain to ending oil subsidies.

Indeed, wildfires in Australia this year are expected to cost $100 billion. There is a very real price tag to failing to deal with climate change. Other costs include drought, starvation, war, pollution and all manner of natural disasters.

Experts have been pressing for jurisdictions that are heavily dependent on oil to diversify. That includes scholars and analysts in this province.

In the absence of an economic update from the provincial government so far this year, best estimates are that Newfoundland and Labrador will run a deficit of $2-3 billion.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, we immediately need both jobs and training for workers who want to transition out of oil. We must insist that the federal and provincial governments prioritize workers over oil companies and their major global contractors.

Prof. Jeff Colgan of the Watson Institute at Brown University has argued that high-priced oil jurisdictions such as Canada will be wiped out of the global industry as part of the post-coronavirus oil shock. Colgan, who is Canadian, also predicted a high level of bankruptcies and mergers in the sector.

While the oil industry has long depended on subsidies, some experts are now urging nations to invest in green energy, rather than recover jobs that will have to be replaced in a few years to meet 2030 climate goals.

One of the findings of the IMF 2019 study was that Canada invests $60 billion annually in oil subsidies. Notably, most of this money goes to oil operators and tier one contractors that are headquartered outside of this country.

Oil subsidies largely do not go to supply and service companies that are home-grown and based in Newfoundland and Labrador. These are also companies that could easily transition into supplying lower carbon energy sectors, with fairly minimal supports.

Frankly, our provincial trade associations should be doing a better job of advocating for transitional funding for local companies, rather than championing the cause of major multinationals.

The fact that the oil sector is in such desperate need of subsidies to survive demonstrates that it is not nearly as lucrative as it claims it to be. The data that proponents present on the economic benefits of oil never factors in the total costs of oil subsidies.

Wildfires in Australia this year are expected to cost $100 billion. (Saeed Khan/AFP/Getty)

The year the world woke up to climate change

Oxford Dictionaries chose “climate emergency” as its word of the year for 2019. We can expect massive shifts in energy sectors globally during the coming decade.

In 2019, 11,000 scientists across the globe signed off on an article in Bioscience, based on climate data from the last 40 years. They recommended the following:

Replacing fossil fuels with low-carbon renewables and cleaner sources of energy. For them this meant that existing fossil fuels should be left in the ground;

  •  Promptly reducing emissions;
  •  Quickly curtailing habitat and biodiversity loss;
  •  Eating mostly a plant-based diet, while reducing global consumption of animal products;
  •  Shifting governance goals from GDP growth to human wellbeing; and
  •  Stabilizing the world’s population. They said family planning services should be available to all people. We must remove barriers to full gender equity and achieve primary and secondary education, as a global norm.

It has become increasingly clear since the Paris Accord was negotiated in 2015 that keeping an increase in global warming to 2 C is not enough.

We also now know that we must keep global warming to 1.5 C above pre-industrial levels in order to prevent irreparable damage to the natural environment. Last year ended with a global average temperature of 1.1 C above pre-industrial levels.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres has warned that we are currently way off track in meeting either the 1.5 C or 2 C targets that the Paris agreement called for.

Time is quickly running out for us to avert the worst impacts of climate disruption.

Canada, notably, is a signatory to the Paris Accord and has ratified it at home.

A pumpjack works at a well head on an oil and gas installation near Cremona, Alta. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)

The future is now

Increasingly, there have been calls for green energy stimulus spending since the economic downturn caused by COVID-19.

The Oxford Review of Economic Policy has accepted astudy which surveyed 231 financial experts across central banks, finance ministries, and economics experts throughout the G20.

These experts identified five areas of economic stimulus which could displace the fossil fuel intensive economy, rather than entrench it. These include:

  •  Building efficiency retrofits;
  •  Investment in education and training;
  •  Natural capital investment;
  •  Clean research and development (this is NOT oil R&D).

Notably, our government is cutting post-secondary education, in both the university and college systems, at a time when we need to be re-training people for the green economy.

The study also found that without a green recovery, it will be nearly impossible to meet the goals of the Paris Accord. However, if the world comes together on green stimulus, this will be nearly sufficient to mitigate the most disastrous impacts of climate change that are predicted within the next 10 years.

The European Union is now poised to announce the world’s greenest economic recovery package. Proposals include:

  •  Up to 80-billion euros to boost electric vehicle (EV) sales;
  •  Doubling investment in charging networks; an option to exempt EVs from value-added taxes;
  •  91-billion euros a year to seal up drafty buildings;
  •  Plans to offer homebuyers green mortgages (for energy efficient homes);
  •  An annual 10-billion euros to support renewal energy and hydro infrastructure.

We are already behind on retraining

Governments and oil companies should have been retraining and transitioning oil employees for some years now.

In Newfoundland and Labrador, we immediately need both jobs and training for workers who want to transition out of oil. We must insist that the federal and provincial governments prioritize workers over oil companies and their major global contractors.

In their stimulus response, they must also prioritize the green economy over the oil economy, as many nations are already doing. If we do this right, we can become a green energy centre of excellence in the global environment.

However, for that to happen, we must act on building the green economy right now.

Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Economy

Cuthand: First Nations must be included in the new economy – Saskatoon StarPhoenix

Published

on


Article content continued

On the surface, it was ridiculous and condemned by Indigenous and environmental groups, but on the other hand, her comment reflects the misguided belief of the Kenney government and, to a lesser extent, Premier Scott Moe in Saskatchewan that things will just continue as before.

The world economy is in a state of flux. China will continue to retaliate against Canada for the arrest and possible deportation of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou. Oil prices will remain low for the foreseeable future and Canada, like most western nations, has taken on record amounts of debt.

The oil industry is evolving due to environmental concerns, competition from OPEC and an economy that may take years to recover. For example, air travel, a major consumer of fuel, will be drastically changed. Smaller airliners, reduced fleets and fears of contagion will affect the usage of fuel. The petroleum industry will remain an important source of energy in the future, but the worldwide glut will continue to keep prices low.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Economy

Cuthand: First Nations must be included in the new economy – The Province

Published

on


This is a time of crises. If we play our cards right, out of it will come greater equality and a more egalitarian society.

The post-COVID world will be much different than today’s economic and social structure. We have to start thinking about what our priorities are and what direction we want to go.

There is growing discussion about implementing a four-day work week to increase employment. There are also ideas being floated about guaranteed annual income, expanded medicare to include elder care and revamping the tax system to increase taxes on the rich.

While some are looking toward an exciting future, others are stuck in the past and think, like U.S. President Donald Trump, that the economy will rebound and everything will go back to the way it was.

But the COVID-19 pandemic revealed weaknesses in the social safety net, the need for better elder care and the gap between rich and poor in Canada.

In Alberta, Sonya Savage, the energy minister in the Kenney government, told a podcast of the Association of Canadian Oil Drilling contractors that it was a good time to build pipelines since COVID-19 makes it impossible for protesters to gather in groups larger than 15 people.

On the surface, it was ridiculous and condemned by Indigenous and environmental groups, but on the other hand, her comment reflects the misguided belief of the Kenney government and, to a lesser extent, Premier Scott Moe in Saskatchewan that things will just continue as before.

The world economy is in a state of flux. China will continue to retaliate against Canada for the arrest and possible deportation of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou. Oil prices will remain low for the foreseeable future and Canada, like most western nations, has taken on record amounts of debt.

The oil industry is evolving due to environmental concerns, competition from OPEC and an economy that may take years to recover. For example, air travel, a major consumer of fuel, will be drastically changed. Smaller airliners, reduced fleets and fears of contagion will affect the usage of fuel. The petroleum industry will remain an important source of energy in the future, but the worldwide glut will continue to keep prices low.

First Nations, Metis and Inuit peoples will have to be part of the new economy. As the source of employment in the oil patch is reduced, there will be a need for new industries to rise up and fill the vacuum. Saskatchewan will see a shift away from an emphasis on resource industries in favour of the tech sector and cultural industries, including the revival of the Saskatchewan film industry.

Agriculture is the bedrock of the Saskatchewan economy, and First Nations have recently acquired new land based on land claims and Treaty Land Entitlement. I see a future where we pay a major role in food production, including livestock and crop production.

We also need to rethink the agriculture industry. Older farmers are getting out of the business and moving away. The rural population is hollowing out as fewer and fewer farmers live on the land and small towns dry up. We joke that in the future the majority of rural residents will be Indians and Hutterites. In the future, as towns continue to shrink and reserve populations grow, the emphasis will shift to reserves. Post offices, grocery stores, schools and other public services may well become a part of the services offered by the First Nations.

In the short term, our communities have done a good job at self-isolating and preventing the spread of the disease. The only exceptions have been where the disease was introduced from the outside.

In the longer term, we are facing a new world with major changes in the social and economic fabric. We will have to rely less on imports and develop many of our own products in-house. We will have to grow more of our own food and be more self-sufficient. The large meat packing factories will become a thing of the past and more emphasis will be placed on local abattoirs.

This is a time of crises. If we play our cards right, out of it will come greater equality and a more egalitarian society.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)



Source link

Continue Reading

Trending