Take Stock – October 14

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is suggesting its more than 1,775 members across the country appeal directly to mayors in the U.S. to boycott the Buy American policy.

Towns, cities asked to take Buy America fight local

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is suggesting its more than 1,775 members across the country appeal directly to mayors in the U.S. to boycott the Buy American policy. The move comes after the mayor of a small northern Ontario city sent letters to three mayors of small municipalities in the U.S. where his city made large purchases recently.

North Bay, Ont., Mayor Victor Fedeli implored them to take a stand against Buy American and to think about the effect on their communities if Canada succumbed to protectionism. Today, the federation suggested all other Canadian municipalities follow Fedeli’s lead. Fedeli says the Canadian embassy in the U.S. told him having 100 Canadian mayors sign on to his initiative will help build American political support for his position. The Buy American provisions that were included in the US$787-billion economic stimulus bill that Congress passed in February favour U.S.-made manufactured goods in government-funded building projects.

New housing prices rise again; still below 2008 levels

Statistics Canada says contractors’ selling prices for new homes rose 0.1 per cent in August following a 0.3 per cent increase in July.

On a year-over-year basis, however, new house prices were still down 3.1 per cent from 2008, with Edmonton recording an 11.4 per cent drop and Victoria down 10 per cent.

The report says prices rose 1.1 per cent in St. John’s, N.L., between July and August, the largest monthly increase in the country. Quebec City saw a month-to-month price increase of 0.9 per cent amid rising costs for labour and material, while Regina prices rose 0.8 per cent. Hamilton saw a 0.5 per cent drop, while prices were off 0.4 per cent in Windsor and 0.3 per cent in Edmonton. St. John’s also recorded a year-over-year increase of 7.5 per cent, its 10th consecutive month of annual increases.

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