- National Bank Financial Banking Sector Review (January 13, 2019)
- Mortgage growth slowed sharply in 2018, November was a 20 year low, due to higher interest rates and stricter regulations
- Higher loan loss reserves are expected, particularly in the oil and gas loan book
- Banks are focusing on buying back their own shares and maintaining dividend policy
- Banks are investing internally to improve efficiencies (especially technology)
- Canadian housing prices are stagnant at best. Edmonton housing prices are down 5.6% from the peak in 2007, Calgary down 5.4% from 2014, Toronto down 4% from 2017, Vancouver down 2.8% from July 2018.
- Canada’s December CPI rose 2% Y/Y vs 1.7% Y/Y in November.
- Lower energy prices were offset by higher prices for air transportation, phone services, travel tours
- Nearly 60% of Canadians say the lack of new pipeline capacity is a ‘crisis’. The majority of Canadians ages 18-34 were not supportive of pipelines.
- World Economic Forum says climate and cyber are 2019 top world concerns.
- Some wind power companies have brought power generation costs down to $0.02 – $0.04 per kWh. Each turbine now generates 3.3 MW vs 1MW several years ago.
- Alberta wants 30% of its electricity to come from renewable resources by 2030.
- California’s wildfires now burn all year as global warming has intensified cyclical droughts.
- Germany’s Rhine waterway (critical to moving coal, car parts, food, and thousands of other goods) risks becoming too shallow for barge traffic because of prolonged droughts.
- Jeremy Grantham, veteran money manager, is devoting 98% of his net worth (approx. $1 billion) to help win the race against climate change.
- China has offered to go on a 6 year buying spree to ramp up imports from the US and to eliminate the US trade imbalance. US officials want the gap closed sooner.
- China’s Central Bank injected a record $83 billion into the financial system to support the economy.
- China is pushing to have their farming sector fully-automated within 7 years.
- More than 100 First Nations are considering 4 ownership modes to purchase the TransMountain Pipeline.
- International Energy Agency says 2019 global oil demand to expand 1.4 million boe/d (1.4%).
- US December home sales fell 11% and prices rose 1.2%.
- Annual car sales in Europe dropped for the first time since 2013; China’s car sales are down for the first time since 1998.
- Volkswagen is investing $800 million with Ford to build a new electric vehicle plant in Tennessee.
- US now says all online gambling is illegal, not just sports bets.