Five Canadian business stories to watch this week


Betting on the banks

Royal Bank of Canada is the first lender to report its fiscal third-quarter results on Wednesday, and most analysts are expecting “solid” growth across the industry, with estimates of earnings-per-share growth as high as 10 per cent year-over-year. CIBC releases third-quarter results on Thursday. The rest of Canada’s biggest banks report the following week.

Pot sovereignty

Representatives of Kahnawake First Nation will hold consultations on the regulation and sale of cannabis within its borders on Tuesday. First Nations chiefs have expressed concern over the impact of legal pot in communities already struggling with an opioid epidemic, and have accused the federal government of cutting them out of the tax revenue from sales of the drug.

Employment insurance update

Statistics Canada releases the employment insurance figures for June on Thursday. StatCan reported that 454,100 people received regular EI benefits in May, virtually unchanged from April. The latest jobs numbers revealed that the economy generated 54,100 net new jobs in July, pushing the unemployment rate back to its four-decade low of 5.8 per cent.

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Poloz at the podium

Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz will make a speech at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s Economic Policy Symposium on Saturday. Given a recent slew of positive economic data, many economists expect him to raise interest rates at least one more time this year. They’ll be watching for what he has to say to our American neighbours who have also been on a rate hike trajectory.

Trade update

Statistics Canada releases the retail trade figures for June on Wednesday. StatCan previously reported that retail trade expanded by two per cent in May, thanks to stronger sales at vehicle and auto parts dealers as well as gas stations. It marked a rebound from April, when sales contracted by 0.9 per cent. The numbers will be closely watched for further signs of economic strength that could signal another interest rate increase.

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