The Tesla saga continues

Elon Musk has repeatedly mentioned the $35,000 price for his Model 3. The problem? Tesla can't make money with such a "low" price. In fact, last year Tesla lost $225,000 per hour.

Musk unveiled specifications for a faster and more powerful version of the Model 3 in a series of tweets over the weekend. It will cost US$78,000, more than double the US$35,000 base-model starting price discussed into the run-up before the electric car’s deliveries started last year. And that doesn’t include the Autopilot driver-assist feature.

Losing $2 billion in a year does focus the mind. Anyway, I don't know even one person who would buy a Model 3 at $35,000. The masses will have to wait for their electric nirvana.

“A Model 3 with a US$35,000 price will be the rarest of the rare,” said Kevin Tynan, a Bloomberg Intelligence analyst. “Perhaps the second most collectible Tesla ever, behind the one floating around in space.”

That's funny.

Oh Canada!

The shorts who didn't cover in the past few days will get annihilated tomorrow:

Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED) ("Canopy Growth" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it expects its common shares will begin trading under the ticker symbol "CGC" on the New York Stock Exchange (the "NYSE") tomorrow, May 24, 2018.

This listing follows a history of firsts for the Company including being the first publicly traded, federally regulated cannabis company in North America, and the first to be included in the S&P/TSX Composite index.

That's funny. The NYSE is two hundred years old and the first cannabis company to ever publicly trade on it is not even American!

Anyway, the real test for Canopy will come when the US legalizes marijuana. Shrewd Trump will eventually do it and then take credit for the mega multi-billion dollar industry.

Weed in the US

Canopy Growth, the Smith Falls, Ont.- based cannabis company, has applied to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange.

Canopy is already one of the largest marijuana companies in Canada and its shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol WEED. But the move to cross-list on the NYSE may open the company up to new investors in the United States.

Canopy Growth will become the first cannabis company on the NYSE. The inflow from US investors, foreign investors, and index funds will mean only one thing: a spike in the stock price. It closed at $30.3 last Friday. Let's see where it is by the end of May.

And then the June 7 vote arrives ...

Aurora buying Medreleaf

Aurora bought CanniMed for roughly $1 billion barely a few weeks ago. That was the largest acquisition in the cannabis industry. Now, according to market capitalization, the second biggest marijuana company will soon acquire the third biggest cannabis producer in Canada:

Aurora Cannabis, one of Canada’s largest licensed weed producers has scooped up rival cannabis producer MedReleaf in a $3.2 billion all-stock deal that sets the stage for Aurora to become the world’s biggest legal weed producer.

The next part is quite funny:

Combined, Aurora and MedReleaf have the funded capacity to produce 570,000 kg per year of cannabis through nine facilities in Canada and two in Denmark, far surpassing the likes of Canopy Growth Corporation, the country’s biggest weed producer which is currently licensed to produce 31,000 kg of weed and weed-related products.

The author just compared the future unlicensed capacity of Aurora to the supposedly current licensed production of Canopy. What's funny is that the first number might not materialize while the second number is false.

Canopy Growth is currently licensed to produce 31,000 kilograms of marijuana and related products, and aims to triple that by July next year, the deadline the federal government has given provinces to make pot legal for all.

The deal gives Canopy 450,000 square feet of greenhouses that can be immediately added to its existing 350,000 square foot facility in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. It is also building an additional 200,000 square feet of greenhouse capacity on its existing property.

That information is from Sep. 7, 2017. Today, Canopy Growth is in the process of finishing 6 million sq. ft. of total capacity. Bruce Linton, the CEO of Canopy Growth, hasn't been explicit and precise about the total yearly production of his company. He has only stated that it'll be in the hundreds of thousands of kilograms.

Anyhow, now the battle is set for the heavyweight title: Canopy vs. Aurora. Let's see who sells the most in 2019. We'll know the top line by February 2020.

The War of the Words has already begun.

The tale of Aphria

Windsor Star:

Leamington marijuana producer Aphria Inc. is on a hiring spree, filling several high-level positions as it prepares for legalization in Canada while also gearing up for a surge into the global market.

After Aurora went after CanniMed, Aphria also got acquisition fever:

In January, Aphria announced it bought global marijuana retailer Nuuvera for $826 million, and licensed producer Broken Coast Cannabis Inc. in B.C. for $230-million.

Aphria was way too conservative in the past few years. They were profitable which looked great but now the CEO says:

“Between myself and my executive management team, we thought we built enough forward-thinking capacity, but we were so wrong,” he said. “We would have loved to have been in a position right now that we could feed all the provincial hungry mouths that we know are asking for product.”

That's quite an admission. Aphria has had a nice profit every quarter for the past few years. That would certainly have gained them some nice attention from the Big Banks but the executives invested in the United States. Juicy margins but that's illegal. That retarded move limited their access to capital.

Now, Aphria has to sell its US investments and buy other companies to get ready for recreational legalization.

Canopy Growth Corp. has over $100 million of marijuana in inventory. By July, they will easily double that. Let's see how much Aphria has for sale in Q3 of this year.


Men are just the worst.

Not cool Tesla

Tesla Inc chief Elon Musk’s refusal to answer “boring” Wall Street questions about the electric car maker’s financial condition sent shares down as much as 7 percent on Thursday and spurred concerns about its ability to raise money in the future.

Tesla just burned over $1 billion in three months. How long can a company survive with that kind of negative cash flow? Who is going to give capital to Tesla after this response?

In a conference call on Wednesday, Musk refused to answer questions from analysts on Tesla’s capital requirements, saying “boring questions are not cool.”

Tesla got tremendous attention because of the crazy acceleration of its cars and the high-tech wizardry inherent in its various products. But now, the bigger problem for Elon Musk is competition ... rich German competition:

VW, BMW and Mercedes-maker Daimler have increased their investment in electromobility, aiming to produce e-cars at a fast clip reliably and find the customers willing to buy them. The German automotive industry invested €4.7 billion between 2016 and 2017 in adapting its factories, more than all the other big competitors together, according to an analysis by consultancy EY.

Ludicrous comparison

Financial Post: 'An absolute gong show': Move over Vancouver, Canada’s craziest housing market is now in Whistler.

A couple of problems with this story:

  1. The core population of Vancouver is 650,000. The Greater Vancouver Area has roughly 2.5 million people. The population of Whistler? 10,000. It's a town built around a tourist area. Most Canadians aren't even aware of its existence.
  2. Why does the story have a photo of Jasper National Park? That park is 400 kilometers away from Whistler. It's so far away that it's in a different province!

The Canadian cannabis space

Financial Post: How the CEOs of Canada's four biggest cannabis companies are gearing up for legalization.

The final vote for the legalization of recreational marijuana in Canada is just five weeks away. It it passes, then in terms of revenue growth rate in the next two years, no other industry in the world is going to come close. Let's see who gets to one billion dollars in yearly top line first. My bet is on Canopy Growth Corp.

Open your wallets for whamen!

The Toronto Star: ‘Free the Tampon’: Canadian campuses aim to offer menstrual products for free.

Centennial College, in particular, has been resetting the coin-operated dispensers in restrooms across the school’s campuses in the Toronto area to provide pads and sanitary napkins free of charge, rather than the standard 25-cent fee.

[Emphasis mine.]

The motto of feminism: I have a vagina. Now, give me free shit!

Canadian stock market fail

The TMX Group provides info on why most of the Canadian stock market simply stopped working on Friday afternoon:

The outage, which began at 1:37:25 pm EDT Friday on MX and 1:39:13 pm EDT on TSX, TSXV, and TSX Alpha, was caused by a hardware failure in a central storage appliance of the trading system. This hardware failure impacted both the primary and the redundant components preventing storage failover procedures from engaging.

Wait. One hardware malfunction takes out both the primary and redundant parts of the system? Looks like the TMX Group should pay for a better setup.

Ignoring economics

Elon Musk knows that if oil becomes prohibitively expensive, then people will switch to electric cars. He wants to accelerate the process. Of course, that means crippling and mounting losses.

The point about the grand forecasts of Musk is undeniable.

For example: In early 2016, Tesla's production forecast for 2020 was 500,000 cars. That was quite an optimistic outlook since the amount of capital, infrastructure, and batteries needed would be staggering. But then, in May 2016, Elon Musk stated that Tesla will produce 500,000 cars in ... 2018!

Let's see the Tesla production numbers from the past few years.

  • 2015: 51,095
  • 2016: 83,922
  • 2017: 101,027

Just a tiny 395% increase in production for the year should do it!

The original Tesla forecast for 2018 was 200,000 cars which Elon Musk bumped up to 500,000 cars! Now, even that initial projection looks wild. I guess those insanely optimistic numbers got him a lot of money but now that he has built up a record of delays and failures, the investors are going to fold their arms.

Canadian stock market croaks

I was checking a Canadian stock quote an hour ago and noticed that it was stuck at 1:39 p.m. The US tickers were working as usual. A halt, perhaps? Nope. The whole Canadian stock market had frozen.

The TMX Group says technical problems have affected the Toronto Stock Exchange, Montreal Exchange and other markets it operates.

The Toronto-based company issued a series of notices by Twitter to alert all users of its trading services.

This is embarrassing:

It wasn't a crazy, high-volume day. So, what happened? Did some diversity hit the fan?

Location, location, location

A Supreme Court of Canada ruling on interprovincial beer imports has sparked fears that provinces and territories will be free to impose restrictions on cannabis flowing over their borders at a time the industry is in its early stages of growth.

In its ruling on the so-called free-the-beer case, the top court said provinces and territories can restrict imports of goods, as long as their intent isn't to impede trade.

(Laughs.) The intent part is hilarious. Trump should use that line.

Kujath worries other provinces will restrict imports of outside cannabis products and give local growers special advantage.

Obviously. Each province wants its jobs, economic growth, and higher tax revenue. Just look at Quebec which announced an epic five-year supply deal with an in-province company called Hydropothecary. The solution is simple: other provinces should do the same.

Last year, I thought that Canopy Growth had an odd strategy. They were building or buying infrastructure for growing marijuana in seven provinces. This means that their average cost per gram wouldn't be as low as other efficient growers. Now, their plans make more sense. If provinces are going to give preference to local production, then the average cost becomes irrelevant -- it's geography that's more important.

The Weed Empire

CBC News:

The smell of marijuana wafting through the airplane on the YVR airport tarmac on Thursday wasn't overpowering, but it left no doubt as to what the huge white boxes filling the plane contained.

Cannabis giant Canopy Growth shipped more than 100,000 tiny pot plants, or clones, from a nursery facility in Ontario to its new greenhouse in Delta, B.C.

Yeah, they did the same thing two months ago:

Just six weeks ago, Canopy invited CBC News to check out its facility in Langley, which it claimed was the largest pot production facility in the world, with 1.2 million square feet of growing space. But now, as the company puts the finishing touches on the Delta greenhouse, it's making new claims on the title. The facility will measure 1.7 million square feet.

There are companies in Canada that have been trying for years to get a license (MGW) or to fully build their greenhouse (ACB). Canopy started converting these pre-built greenhouses in December 2017. They've got the two licenses and 200,000 plants. That's some scorching execution in just five months.

The state of US weed

Canopy Growth Corp. owns the largest legal marijuana greenhouse in Canada today. Its area is 1.7 million sq. ft. The second largest is also owned by them. Its area is 1.3 million sq. ft. Both are in British Columbia.

Aurora Cannabis will soon build the third largest -- 1.2 million sq. ft. -- in Alberta.

It will take some time for the US to catch up: I Went on a Tour of America's Biggest Legal Weed Factory.

The site features a sterile tissue culture lab where plants are sliced up and multiplied, a purple-lit cloning room where weed grows in test tubes out of agar jelly, a $4,000 Futurola grinder capable of shredding three pounds of flower in two seconds, and a 26,000-square-foot Dutch-designed warehouse that will soon be home to 25,000 plants. Manufacturing manager Jeff Spinder says the factory will be capable of producing 10,000 pounds of marijuana every year.

[Emphasis mine.]

That's roughly 4550 kilograms or 0.175 kilograms per sq. ft. That's a staggeringly optimistic prediction of yields. Let's say that in Canada, the producers manage only 0.1 kg per sq. ft. Then, for 2019, the largest Canadian company will likely be harvesting 66 times the amount of the largest US company.

Trump can have a huge winning issue if he decides to make marijuana legal.

Canopy goes for Czech mate

The Weed King expands its empire:

("Canopy Growth" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that the Company has signed definitive agreements to acquire Annabis Medical s.r.o ("Annabis Medical"), expanding the Company's focus into another emerging medical cannabis market. This transaction is scheduled to close Monday, April 16, 2018.

Annabis Medical is the leader in the Czech Republic's medical cannabis industry and currently imports and distributes cannabis products pursuant to federal Czech licenses, with products for sale through pharmacy channels across the Czech Republic. Its founder and CEO, Dr. Robin Kazík, will continue to lead and grow the Czech subsidiary as part of the larger Canopy Growth family.

So, it looks like the Czech company doesn't lose any employees and it gets the largest marijuana firm on Earth as its supplier. Win-win.

Under the terms of the agreement, the Company will issue Dr. Kazík 50,735 common shares in the capital of the Company valued at $1,491,882.70 on closing and, subject to meeting certain milestones, will issue up to an additional 34,758 common shares valued at $1,022,080.00, based on the 5 day VWAP of $29.40519 on April 5, 2018. The total value of the consideration payable under the terms of the agreement is approximately $2,513,962.70. All amounts are in Canadian dollars unless otherwise noted.

That's it!? Considering the hundreds of millions of dollars of dilution by Aphria and Aurora in the last few months, this acquisition is shockingly cheap.

The God Emperor approves

Trump won't take on 29 states which have legalized medical marijuana.

President Trump is going green — and Attorney General Sessions is likely seeing red.

Trump announced Wednesday that he will back congressional efforts to protect states' rights to legal marijuana, according to a Republican senator.

Trump is a businessman and a shrewd politician. By supporting marijuana legalization, he'll be removing uncertainty from a multi-billion dollar industry. Jobs, incomes, and tax revenues will go up. Plus, the super-conservative states that don't want marijuana are free to follow their paths.

Also, it's not like the Democrats are going to oppose Trump on this issue. He'll likely be taking credit for The Weed Boom in his second term.

The Departure of the Dongs

A Ho Chi Minh City-based company is being denounced as a scam that has swindled a hefty sum out of a purported 32,000 victims by duping them into investing in virtual currencies to earn easy, ‘real’ money.

That's a lot of suckers. 6% annual growth would be a reasonable estimate for the US stock market. The "investors" of this Vietnamese scam were promised over 600% per year!

Investors have been told that they would enjoy a profit rate of 48 percent a month from their initial investment, and recoup all investments after four months. People would also be rewarded with an eight percent commission for every new member they have introduced to the network.

Everyone wants to be a lottery winner today. The tried and tested but excruciatingly slow method of building wealth is beyond most people.

Drug dealers with badges

Eight Argentine police officers have been dismissed for blaming missing drugs on mice.

Investigators discovered 540kg (1,191lb) of marijuana missing from a police warehouse in Pilar, north-west of Buenos Aires.

540 kilograms! Damn. That's a lot of mice.

A spokesperson for Judge Adrián González Charvay said that according to experts at Buenos Aires University, "mice wouldn't mistake the drug for food" - and even if they did, "a lot of corpses would have been found in the warehouse".

Legal Canadian growers get around $7.50 a gram. Assuming that the Argentinian "mice" got $1 per gram, that's a cool $540,000.

Canada vs. China

China politely tells the Canadian prime minister to fuck off:

China's ambassador has firmly rejected a key pillar of the Trudeau government's trade agenda, branding its attempts to entrench labour standards in a free trade pact as a non-starter for his country.

Ambassador Lu Shaye said Tuesday that Canada's "so-called" progressive trade agenda has no place in the free trade agreement the two countries have been pursuing in fits and starts for several years.

What! No gay pride parades in China!? Won't they accept tens of thousands of Muslim rapefugees!? No safe spaces for snowflakes in China!?


How to create misery

There is a bias in climate policy shared by analysts, politicians, and pundits across the political spectrum so common it is rarely remarked upon. To put it bluntly: Nobody, at least nobody in power, wants to restrict the supply of fossil fuels.

Policies that choke off fossil fuels at their origin — shutting down mines and wells; banning new ones; opting against new pipelines, refineries, and export terminals — have been embraced by climate activists, picking up steam with the Keystone pipeline protests and the recent direct action of the Valve Turners.

Millions of workers will lose their jobs and consumers will pay significantly higher prices for energy. But hey, the "climate activists" will feel good about themselves.

BMO warms up to weed

Bank of Montreal is giving a platform to marijuana growers in Canada:

Bank of Montreal is pushing deeper into the marijuana sector by assigning an analyst to cover the space and holding its first cannabis conference at the end of May.

Who will show up?

The chief executive officers of Canadian growers Aphria Inc., Aurora Cannabis Inc., Canopy Growth Corp., Cronos Group Inc. and MedReleaf Corp. are set to make presentations at BMO’s conference.

Wow. All the big guns will be presenting. Hopefully, there will be a video or a transcript.

The mirage of equality

It's stunning that these idiots who peddle the gender pay gap myth look at the aggregate salary means for men and women. They're not even pretending to compare the same jobs.

Here's a recent example from the Toronto Star:

Bank of Nova Scotia and Toronto-Dominion Bank have some of the widest gender pay disparities among Canadian lenders in their U.K. operations, according to regulatory disclosures.

Scotiabank, Canada’s third-biggest lender, pays women 44 per cent less than men on average in the U.K., with the gap widening to 72 per cent for bonuses, according to regulatory disclosures. Scotiabank’s London operations fall under the bank’s capital markets division, where the Toronto-based bank employs about 300 people, of which 35 per cent are women.

Just a small hint there. Later in the article:

“We recognize that this is an important conversation and the industry has a lot of work to do in closing the gender pay gap,” Royal Bank said in a statement Thursday. “The UK Gender Pay Gap report does not compare pay between employees in similar roles for similar work; rather the difference in average pay between men and women arises because we have more men than women in senior roles.”

[Emphasis mine.]

Can you imagine a similarly retarded news story about the gender pay gap at a Victoria's Secret show? Those poor, male janitors and caterers are paid peanuts compared to the millions made by the oppressive supermodels! The horror!

Skin in the Game

A trader shows us how he makes money using technical analysis.

With WEED at US$20, I thought he would buy and sell a few thousand shares. Instead, it was 10,000! That buy was quite stunning for a day trade. Add to that the sizable CRON flips and this guy is moving some serious capital.

Spanking for Shapiro

Spencer P. Morrison: Yes, Ben Shapiro is Still Wrong on Tariffs. Here’s Why.

Consider what happened in America’s Rustbelt. The region used to be a Republican stronghold. However, when millions of people began losing their jobs because of offshoring—caused by asymmetrical trade—the region turned blue. People voted for socialism to insulate themselves from the ravages of economic globalization. Socialism was a direct, and sadly iatrogenic response to free trade. It did more harm than good: Democratic governments raised taxes and imposed regulations that further crippled American industry. They made a bad problem worse.

Shapiro must answer this question: Were the alleged gains from freer trade with Communist China worth the proliferation of socialism in America? Was saving a few dollars on your $1,000 computer worth decades of Democratic governments, which damaged the U.S. economy with higher taxes and more regulations? I doubt it. We cannot limit our discussion of tariffs to their economic consequences—political reality forces Shapiro to choose: tariffs or socialism? What kind of “big government” does he want?

An excellent point.

A slight tangent: I studied economics in university. Many people don't know that before the abominable income tax, the US federal government got its revenues from tariffs. The income tax upon its introduction was supposed to be temporary. Governments got addicted to the revenue. They were reluctant to cancel the tax. Eventually, that income tax system was deemed unconstitutional!

The perfidious politicians of that era amended the US Constitution and Americans, sadly, accepted the income tax. The filthy rich had to pay around 7% of their income to Uncle Sam. Thirty years later, that top rate had been spiked all the way to 94%!

When it comes to hurting the republic, there's no contest between income taxes or tariffs. The US economy did a lot better with tariffs for over a hundred years.

The banks are not your friends

Canada's financial consumer watchdog says there are "insufficient" controls in place at the country's biggest banks to prevent sales of financial products that are misrepresented or unsuitable for consumers, and the banks' sales-focused culture elevates the risk that employees may flout consumer protection rules.

Banksters have to earn a living.

TD Bank, the focus of the initial CBC, has conducted its own internal review and concluded it did not have a widespread problem with aggressive sales tactics.

(Laughs.) Of course, it didn't.

Anecdote: I know a girl who went to TD to get a credit card few years ago. There was just one problem. The income requirement for it was $60,000. She worked minimum wage. Her income was barely close to $20,000 a year. That didn't stop the TD rep from filling out the application and, surprise!, she got a new credit card.

The power of convexity

It's like playing a sensible lottery. Of course, most people don't have the stomach to go through hundreds of failures to hit gold.

The Vagina Fraud

Math is hard:

Elizabeth Holmes — the Silicon Valley wunderkind whose blood-testing startup Theranos has collapsed in a slew of scandals — has been charged with “massive fraud” by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The SEC on Wednesday accused Theranos CEO Holmes and a top lieutenant of defrauding investors of more than $700 million through false claims about its technology.

More stunning numbers:

While Theranos had said it was on track to make $100 million by the end of 2014, the real figure was “a little more than $100,000,” according to the SEC. And, contrary to what Theranos told investors about the Department Defense using its blood tests, they were “never deployed by the DOD in the battlefield, in Afghanistan, or on medevac helicopters,” according to the settlement.

Zapp Brannigan left this comment at Vox Day:

What interested me, however, was that one of the glamour shots in the image search was from an article listing the Ten Youngest Female Billionaires. I looked through it and, quelle surprise, EVERY woman in the list apart from Holmes had inherited their fortune from a man:

Literally, the only female billionaire in the list who had actually built her own fortune is a fraud.

Women are very good at spending money. Making it is a different story. Of course, most don't need to. It is simply easier to marry a rich guy than to go out in the cruel world and battle competitors for years to build wealth.

Monetizing White guilt

That's one entrepreneurial Nigerian:

A restaurant in New Orleans is hoping to raise awareness of racial wealth differences in the country by charging white customers more.

SAARTJ is a pop-up restaurant in the Louisiana city run by local Nigerian chef Tunde Wey who will be charging white customers $18 (£13) extra for their meal.

Note that this will be a choice for White customers:

Customers have two price options to choose from. Either $12 (£8.66) or the suggested price of $30 (£21.66).

As Tunde explains the standard price is available to everyone, but only white customers will be asked to consider the suggested price.

Only 150% extra for the "privilege" of being White! This is an excellent strategy to fleece the lame and craven portion of the White race.

Around 78 per cent of white customers have chosen to pay the extra fee, which he believes comes through "positive social pressure" and the need to feel like someone is doing something to help others.

The correct answer isn't to say, "No, I won't pay the suggested price." The proper response is to not visit this shitty establishment.

Let's change this!

Diversity is strength:

Bozoma Saint John, Uber's chief brand officer, called on white men to help diversify their workplaces.

"I want white men to look around in their office and say, 'Oh look, there's a lot of white men here. Let's change this,'" Saint John said at the SXSW festival on Sunday.

Totally agree. I want Black men to look around in the NBA and the NFL and say, "Damn, a lot of niggas here. Let's change this!"

Saint John said the onus should not be on people of color to improve diversity at work: "Why do I — as the black woman — have to fix that? There's 50 of you, there's one of me. Ya'll fix it. ... Everybody else needs to make the noise — I want white men to make the noise."

Dear Black People: over 70% of the players in the NBA and the NFL are Black. Ya'll fix it. I want Black men to make the noise. Only 13% of these players should be Black. As Bozoma Saint John has said, "At least try to get to population numbers." The logic of social justice demands it!

More growth for Canopy

Canopy Growth Corp. has been getting a lot of attention lately between Constellation Brands buying a 10% stake and the news that the company is likely to gain a listing on Nasdaq in the second quarter.

Their next move is quite aggressive:

Bloomberg reported earlier this week that Canopy was one of a trio of companies pursuing Alcaliber SA, a Spanish company that produces raw narcotic materials used to produce Morphine and Thebaine.


The acquisition of Alcaliber would almost certainly accelerate Canopy's move onto a senior exchange. While the company trades in Canada under the ticker LEAF, and it is listed on OTC Markets under TMWJF, trading on Nasdaq or the NYSE would give the company exposure to more investors.

Seriously? It has been 48 hours and that stunning mistake is still there! Canopy doesn't trade under the ticker LEAF -- that would be MedReleaf Corp. The ticker for Canopy is WEED.

The old canard

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau says Canada must do better in closing the gender gap in pay and workforce participation for the health of the economy.

Speaking to the Calgary Chamber on the recently released federal budget, Morneau says the numbers are startling as women still earn on an hourly basis 88 cents for every dollar earned by men.

It's strange how the profit-driven businesses have no issue paying men 14% more for the same work. Maybe, this is plain bullshit.

Maybe, this might be a factor for higher male earnings:

“Ninety-seven percent of workplace deaths are men,” says Bilsker. “We just take this for granted—‘Oh, men are naturally risk-takers.’ ” But why should the notion that men will take on dangerous jobs and suffer the consequences be socially acceptable? If chambermaids suffered the same on-the-job death rate as truck drivers or loggers, there’d be a terrific outcry and immediate action, he observes: “We simply wouldn’t let it happen.”

For every $1 made by women, men make $1.14. Outrage!

For every 1 woman killed at the workplace, 32 men are killed. Silence.

Fake hypothetical!

What's funny is that the NYTimes wanted to create a hypothetical couple to showcase the misery of the Trump tax cuts. They failed quite spectacularly. It just goes to show how the media manufactures news instead of reporting it.

Fortune favors the bold

CBC News:

As thousands of entrepreneurs scramble to make a buck off legalized marijuana, six CEOs leading Canada's largest cannabis companies have already put their plans for global domination into action.

Among them are two American venture capitalists who decided cannabis is the next big thing. There is also the longtime CEO of a vitamin company, an investment banker who was in charge of business development at Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital, and a hockey dad who started out as an electrician.

What they share is a belief that the regulated system in Canada gives them a competitive head start as marijuana laws around the world evolve and new markets open up.

It's amusing how, just five years ago, the relatives and friends of these CEOs were trying to talk some "sense" into them.

Hey, why do you want to ruin your life and reputation by going into this shady and obscene business? Go the safer and respectable route and don't waste your talents!

Five years ago, only four countries were considering federal legalization of marijuana -- at least for patients. Today, that number stands at a staggering thirty nations.

A to Z

Goliath has a voracious appetite:

Banks have been warily watching Inc. for signs it would threaten their world. The tech giant's latest move looks more like an opportunity.

Amazon should enter the Canadian banking market and offer zero-fee chequing accounts. The Big 5 Banks in Canada could use a little competition.


Amazon is in talks with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Capital One Financial Corp. about the product, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday. The target is younger consumers and people without checking accounts, the newspaper said, citing people familiar with the matter. The strategy could help Amazon lower fees it pays to financial firms and give it a bigger window into customers' income and spending habits.

That's quite the achievement for a firm that started off as an online bookstore.

The misery of Uber

Ride-hailing giants Uber and Lyft are delivering pitiful levels of take-home pay to the hundreds of thousands of US independent contractors providing their own vehicles and driving skills to deliver the core service, according to an MIT CEEPR study examining the economics of the two app platforms.

Fuel, insurance, maintenance eat a lot of the revenue, and then Uber takes its monster cut. The minimum wage in Ontario will be $15 per hour next year. Few Uber drivers could match, let alone exceed, that.

The researchers found profit from ride-hail driving to be “very low”. On an hourly basis, the median profit was $3.37 per hour, with 74% of drivers earning less than the minimum wage in the state where they operate.

Here's the puzzling part: why do they do it? If 3 out of 4 Uber drivers are earning less than minimum wage, then shouldn't they simply stop and get a low-end job that will put more money in their pockets?

Uber is sensible for those who drive to work and back and pick up customers along the way. Those few dollars don't hurt. However, being a full-time Uber driver is almost always a losing proposition in the long run.

Canopy Growth on Nasdaq

Financial Post:

Cannabis giant Canopy Growth Corp. is considering listing on the Nasdaq, CEO Bruce Linton told a meeting of the Economic Club of Canada on Thursday.

It would be quite something if Linton got the listing on April 20.

“I think Nasdaq is doing a great job because they’re not allowing people to list who break (U.S.) federal laws, and so I think it’s a place we should list in due course, because we like to follow all the rules,” he added.

That's a burn for Aphria -- one of the top marijuana producers in Canada which had made investments in the US. That was a big and dumb mistake by Aphria. Now, they are in the process of having to sell off those investments.

“There are 29 countries, either who have adopted or are adopting the (medical marijuana) public policy framework that Canada has led. If you add the people in those countries, it’s way more than 10 times the number of people in our country.”

This will the big growth story for many years.

WEED on the Nasdaq soon

Canada’s largest weed producer has expressed interest in listing on the Nasdaq at some point in the future. The announcement comes on the heels of another Canadian licensed weed producer Cronos Group, which became the first-ever weed company to list on a major U.S. stock exchange earlier this week.

According to a note by Beacon Securities analyst Vahan Ajamian, Canopy Growth Corporation CEO Bruce Linton made clear his intention to list on the Nasdaq at an Economic Club of Canada lunch Thursday afternoon in Toronto, adding that Canopy had in already been preparing to list on the exchange since October 2017.

Excellent. This means that Canopy and Constellation will be ready when marijuana is legalized on the federal level in the US. This will also give Americans easier investment options when it comes to the shares of Canopy. I think that many retirement accounts there can only trade in US-listed securities. So, this will bring billions of dollars of extra liquidity.

Lacking perspective

Most Westerners don't comprehend the meaning of poverty. Someone who buys an Android device instead of an iPhone is often classified as "poor" by young Millennials.

Timmies gets a virus

The employees of Tim Hortons are having a miserable time:

An association representing Tim Hortons franchisees is threatening legal action if parent company Restaurant Brands International refuses to meet with store owners to fix a computer virus that recently knocked out cash registers at an unconfirmed number of locations, inflaming an already-tense relationship between head office and frontline workers.

I went to a local shop last month. There was just one guy placing his order in front of me. I thought, "Great, this should be fast."

It took nearly 10 minutes for his order to go through. He had a coupon which the cashier couldn't input correctly. She got her supervisor who was also stumped. Finally, they brought out a folder which detailed the complex procedure of entering the discount code.


Plus, the atmosphere in the place was that of a morgue. The employees looked very depressed.

Some store owners have complained of draconian cost cutting by the company’s new owners, resulting in lower-quality products, a damaged brand and weaker profits.

After months of recriminations and multiple lawsuits, the situation reached a boiling point last month when some franchisees scaled back benefits and cut paid breaks for store staff in response to Ontario’s minimum wage increases.

The franchisees accused Restaurant Brands of refusing to raise menu prices to offset the added labour costs. In response, RBI said the reduced perks were the work of a “rogue group”.

What a clusterfuck.

Average real wage falls

Ontario’s minimum wage increase is showing up on restaurant menus.

Prices for food purchased at the province’s eateries rose 1.9 per cent in January from a month earlier, Statistics Canada reported Friday from Ottawa. That coincides with legislative changes that saw the minimum wage increase more than 20 per cent at the start of this year to $14 an hour.

Of course, the negative effects of the minimum wage spike aren't limited to restaurants.

Ontario outpaced inflation in other provinces and territories for other categories as well.

Child-care and housekeeping services in Ontario, for example, increased 9.9 per cent in January compared with the same month the previous year, according to Statistics Canada, while Canada-wide that service increased 5.8 per cent.

Those are stunning increases in just one year. Soon, the prices will catch up and then the drum beats for $20 or $25 minimum wage will start. The only question is: how soon?