To The Pointwith Boris Bozic
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1 Comments U.S. Election – What Does it Mean for Canada?

Article written by Boris Bozic on the 08 Nov 2012 in Current Events,US Politics

“Maintaining the status quo for America is not an option for the global economy, more specifically for Canada.”

Now that Americans have decided to maintain the status quo, high unemployment rates, mounting debt, failing economy and political gridlock, the only question remains – How does the election result impact Canada?  Unfortunately the American Presidential election is not something we can simply dismiss by saying “it’s their business, not ours”; our business is impacted by who and what party America elects.

In Canada, the Harper government did what it was supposed to do, they, stayed out of it and keep their opinions to themselves. Not easy to do considering how intertwined our economies are but we’re the junior partner in this relationship and we have to tread lightly.  It didn’t take long for both Prime Minister Harper and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty to issue statements that maintaining the status quo for America is not an option for the global economy, more specifically for Canada.  Here’s how Prime Minister sugarcoated it, “The U.S. has taken many aggressive and ambitious measures on its financial system but we’re now facing the fiscal cliff situation in the American political system in the next couple of months. That’s a big uncertainty.”  Finance Minister Jim Flaherty was more direct, “Of course we’re worried because it would mean — were the entire fiscal cliff risk to come to reality, there would be the effect on U.S. GDP — according to the Americans themselves — would be four to five per cent, which would put the U.S. economy into recession quite quickly, and the Canadian economy would follow shortly thereafter, and would have significant effect on the global economy.  So this is all very serious, and we hope our American colleagues move forward to a resolution promptly.” No ambiguity there.  The stakes are high and it’s hard to imagine that both Democrats and Republicans would be willing to drag their economy, and subsequently ours, into another recession for ideological reasons. Then again I wouldn’t bet on them doing the right thing for the greater good either.

Obama’s reelection probably means that Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke stays on the job when his term expires.  The Republicans made it very clear they were displeased with Bernanke, and the role that the Treasury plays as it relates to monetary policy.  Bernanke willingly or unwillingly helped Obama out during the campaign with the introduction of QE3, quantitative easing, which helped to boost economic data over the last two months of the campaign.  If Bernanke stays on the job we can expect rates to stay at historical lows until Q3 of 2014.  As I’ve stated before, if you want some indication as to where rates are going in Canada, see what the Fed Chairman is doing.

So, our government is concerned about the fiscal mess the Americans are in, rates are not going up in the mid-term,  no indication if Obama is going to change his position on the Keystone Pipeline, looks like not much has changed.  For our sake let’s hope the President is willing to move to the center and work with Republicans on the “Bush” tax cuts and budget.  The pragmatist in me believes it may happen given the President doesn’t have to pander to his base anymore; he’s never running for office again. The pessimist in me takes over when I consider the President has never made an attempt to move to the center, even after the Democrats lost their majority in Congress in 2010.  That should be worrisome for all of us because we all have skin in this deal.

Until next time,




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Agree 100% with your comments Boris. Unfortunately the policiticans in the US will play politics for a while but eventually they MUST focus on the economy for the good of everyone there and in the rest of the world. Financial commentator Preet Bannerjee wrote another related post at

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