Consumer debt on the rise thanks to spike in car loans

OTTAWA — Fresh data suggests Canadians are continuing to pile on consumer debt, but the modest increase suggests credit growth is slowing to crawl-speed.TransUnion’s latest quarterly look at non-mortgage debt shows the average consumer added $69 in non-mortgage debt during the first three months of 2012 from the previous quarter to bring outstanding debt to $26,029.From last year, consumers are on average $432 deeper into debt.‘Increases in auto loan debt generally mean more consumers are purchasing vehicles and are effectively managing their debt’The recent growth is attributed to a spike in auto loans, offsetting declines in credit card debt, lines of credit and instalment loans.Car loans rose by more than $2,000, or 12.6%, from the first quarter of 2011 to $18,2012.TransUnion’s Thomas Higgins said even though consumer debt remains high, growth has slowed and in the last year has been skewed by the auto sector.“This could be seen as a positive,” said Higgins, the credit reporting agency’s vice president of analytics.“Increases in auto loan debt generally mean more consumers are purchasing vehicles and are effectively managing their debt because they have strong enough credit to qualify for loans.”[np-related]In comparable year-over-year periods ending with the fourth quarter of the year, consumer debt growth has slowed from about 10% and higher in 2008 and 2009, to just over five per cent in 2010 and to one per cent in 2011.The latest quarter’s data shows a slight acceleration but only to 1.66% annualized.TransUnion also points out that consumer delinquencies remain low and that auto delinquencies are now the lowest in two years.The Bank of Canada has warned for some time that many Canadians are at risk of getting in over their heads with debt, but the main concern is mortgage and home equity credit, which represents about 70% of all household debt.According to Statistics Canada, household debt to annual disposable income has been at record highs of over 150 per cent for most the past year.Analysts note that the debt ratio has continued to rise even though there have been signs of cooling in the housing market, in part because income growth has also eased.In a report issued Tuesday, the Royal Bank said the first quarter 2012 also saw home affordability decline, meaning the costs of maintaining a residence were increasing as a percentage of income.Much like housing debt, the TransUnion data shows that residents of British Columbia have the most non-mortgage debt at $37,433, while consumer debt in Ontario is just below the national average, and in Quebec averaged a relatively low $18,475.The Canadian Press read more

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Turo brings the Airbnb of car rentals to Alberta Ontario and Quebec

TORONTO — A company that has taken the Airbnb model and adapted it to car rentals launched Tuesday in three provinces, its first foray outside the U.S., though it wrestles with the same insurance headaches that other startups in the so-called sharing economy have faced.Turo, which debuted as RelayRides in 2009 and now operates in more than 2,500 cities, facilitates vehicle rentals between car owners and anyone needing a ride.People in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec hoping to make money from their cars register them online to rent them to other Turo members.Why business travellers aren’t sold on Airbnb, but rush to Uber and LyftHow crowdfunding site Klondike Strike is changing the way junior miners raise moneyFive daring disruptors win US$1.25M each to help them change the worldTuro determines the rental cost of available vehicles each day based on data like the car’s market value, location and time of year. The company pockets 25 per cent of the rental fee, which includes a charge for the owner’s insurance coverage during the rental.But provincially regulated insurance rules have made a seamless transition north of the border difficult.The limited launch Tuesday “was the most expedient way for Turo to bring peer-to-peer sharing to Canada,” said Cedric Mathieu, Turo’s director of Canada, in an emailed statement.Turo has partnered with Intact Financial Corp. and Belairdirect to provide insurance for Canadian clients, a move that will make the service more attractive to customers, said CEO Andre Haddad.Anyone living in or visiting Alberta, Ontario and Quebec — and approved by Turo’s verification system, which takes into account driving history — can rent a vehicle. They can choose to opt out of insurance, or add basic or premium coverage when renting — at 15 or 40 per cent of the trip’s price. Any claims that arise from a Turo car rental have no impact on the owner’s personal insurance, said Stephanie Sorensen, director of external communications and corporate social responsibility for Intact.But it’s not so simple for people looking to rent out their cars, as insurance companies grapple with how to provide coverage.Only car owners insured by Intact Insurance and Belairdirect who live in those three provinces can list their vehicles on Turo. The insurers have modified their offerings to allow their customers to rent out their vehicles, said Mathieu.“Moving forward, we are working with other leading Canadian insurers to modify their terms and conditions to enable their customers to also participate in peer-to-peer car sharing,” he said. The company also plans to move to other provinces and is “working with each province’s unique insurance laws and regulatory framework to make this happen,” said Mathieu.The insurance issue is one that has consistently cropped up for companies that have aimed to disrupt more traditional business models.Ride-hailing service Uber recently temporarily suspended operations in Edmonton and Calgary after the Alberta government announced it would not make insurance available to drivers until the summer and require them to hold a commercial licence.Airbnb, which allows people to rent a portion or all of their home to travellers, hit a stumbling block when some homeowners complained their places were trashed. One Calgary family, for example, were left with $75,000 in damage following a raging house party.Airbnb, which offers up to $1 million for property damage in certain situations, said it would pay for the repairs. read more

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List of 59 Sears store closures throughout the country

TORONTO — Sears Canada is shuttering 59 locations as part of a court-supervised restructuring. Here’s a list of where the closures are taking place:Sears Full-Line Department Stores:Medicine Hat, Alta.Grande Prairie, Alta.Lloydminster, Alta.Red Deer, Alta.Kamloops Aberdeen Mall, B.C.Bathurst, N.B.Saint John, N.B.Corner Brook, N.L.Truro, N.S.Dartmouth, N.S.Brockville, Ont.Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.Hull, Que.Chicoutimi, Que.Saint-Georges, Que.Alma, Que.Drummondville, Que.ReginaMoose Jaw, Sask.Prince Albert, Sask.——Sears Hometown Stores:Cold Lake, Alta.St. Albert, Alta.Okotoks, Alta.Spruce Grove, Alta.Fort McMurray, Alta.Leduc, Alta.Sherwood Park, Alta.Creston, B.C.Sechelt, B.C.Grand Forks, B.C.Orangeville, Ont.Rimouski, Que.Rouyn-Noranda, Que.Melville, Sask.——Sears Outlet Stores:Abbotsford Retail, B.C.Winnipeg Garden CityHalifaxCornwall, Ont.Chatham, Ont.Cambridge, Ont.Timmins, Ont.Saint-Eustache, Que.Montreal Place Vertu, Que.Sorel, Que.——Sears Home Stores:CalgaryEdmonton SkyviewAncaster, Ont.Woodbridge, Ont.London, Ont.Scarborough, Ont.Kingston, Ont.Ottawa EastSudbury, Ont.Windsor, Ont.Orillia, Ont.Saint-Bruno, Que.Laval, Que.Quebec CitySainte-Foy, Que. read more

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Tentative deal reached for striking Toronto Pearson airport ground crew

TORONTO — Striking ground crew workers at Canada’s busiest airport have reached a tentative deal with their employer.Teamsters Canada and Swissport say the deal involving the workers at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport was struck on Tuesday, although details of the tentative agreement won’t be released until it has been ratified in the coming days.About 700 cabin cleaners, baggage handlers and other ground crew workers employed by Swissport at Pearson have been on strike since late July.Union spokesman Christopher Monette says the union is recommending its members accept the offer.The workers’ concerns included pay and benefits cuts, scheduling issues, and what their union called a lack of respect from Swissport managers.Swissport says it is looking forward to seeing its workers return to the job.The company services 30 airlines at the airport, including Air Transat, Sunwing Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Air France, KLM and Lufthansa. Air Canada and WestJet are not serviced by the company. read more

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WatchAt NAFTA talks US negotiators squeezed at home and abroad over controversial

MEXICO CITY — The United States negotiating team found itself squeezed at home and abroad during NAFTA talks on Monday, with various actors from Canada, Mexico and within the U.S. pressing it to reconsider demands called unworkable and unworthy of serious bargaining.The Canadian and Mexican governments have refused to produce a counter-proposal at the current round of talks on auto policy and are instead delivering a presentation on the self-inflicted damage they claim it would wreak upon America.Their case was bolstered within the U.S. Senate.At NAFTA talks, Canada delivers a lecture on autos, not a counter-offer, in face of ‘ridiculous’ U.S. proposalThe only thing hanging over Canada’s economy is one five-letter wordA major auto association told a hearing that the current proposal could induce companies to leave this continent and simply pay import tariffs. This was on the same day that 18 U.S. senators sent a letter demanding the administration conduct an economic analysis before making any changes to NAFTA.The U.S. stunned its partners by demanding that car companies quickly transform their supply chains to boost North American content; ensure half of a car’s parts come from the U.S.; use a new, stricter formula for calculating the origins of a car’s components; and do it all within a year.”No vehicle produced today could meet such an onerous standard,” the Senate hearing was told by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.”This proposal is unprecedented and would have significant ramifications on our industry and the U.S. economy, as a whole.”The U.S. negotiating team is urging people to tone down the rhetoric.It apparently views such proposals as a starting point. An American source familiar with the talks pointed to evidence of the U.S. willingness to negotiate in good faith: the very broadly phrased list of American objectives published online last week.In a few cases, that list includes specific numbers — like the demand that Canada relax its duties on online purchases by $780. In the case of automobiles, though, there are no numbers — just a reference to a desire for U.S. content in cars.The source said this is normal in negotiating. But what’s less normal, the source said, is the public rhetoric by the Canadian side, with talk of red-lines and non-starters that will make it harder to advance negotiations.The Canadians adopted a deliberate strategy at this round of proposing nothing on the hardest issues.Instead, they will deliver a presentation and demand details. Along with Mexico, Canada will press the American side for clarity on how the auto proposal would work, with the subtext of that conversation being their belief that the proposal would not, in fact, work at all.One stakeholder advising the Canadian government says the proposal was written in vague prose, was light on specifics and never gave clear indications of how it might be applied.Flavio Volpe of the Auto Parts Manufacturers’ Association cites the examples of windshields and plastic components, which are made of sand, oil, and — going back further — carbon-based life forms that died millions of years ago.“So if I’m a glass-maker, my raw material is sand. How am I going to trace (where) sand (comes from)? … Do you do that on the granule level? Do you do it by bag? Or do you have to send a picture of the beach?” Volpe said.“So I think it’s important we get some technical advice from the experts at (the U.S. Trade Representative) on how exactly we’re going to do that… A lot of plastics are petroleum-based. So what’s the methodology there — are we tracing back to bitumen, are we tracing back to sweet crude?“When you say you’re going back to the base raw materials that’s what you’re talking about. So when did the dinosaurs die? And where did they die? And can we claim ownership of that?”Multiple sources say the Canadians want to press the U.S. to refine its own offer on autos, before making a counter-proposal. Canadian officials have noted the internal U.S. opposition to the American proposal, including from six dozen American lawmakers who wrote a letter last week blasting it and the hearing before the Senate on Monday.The senator who convened the hearing opened it by praising NAFTA.”The positive economic impact of the current agreement is no secret to the people in this room or to the citizens of Texas,” said Sen. John Cornyn.”The data is staggering and the verdict is clear: NAFTA worked as intended.”He pressed a U.S. trade official on some of the proposals. That official, Stephen Vaughn, said he understands industries are concerned and that’s why the U.S. wants to wrap up a deal quickly, with a target date set for spring.But he insisted other countries will have to make concessions.”We do not expect these negotiations to be easy,” Vaughn said.”For a very long time, our NAFTA partners have enjoyed an agreement that is tilted in their favour. They do not want to give up that advantage and we can understand why they feel that way. But our job … is to represent the people of this country — and they deserve a better deal.” read more

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Navy stops boat heading to Australia

All were brought to the Modara Fisheries Harbour to be handed over to the CID for further investigations. The Navy arrested 86 people who were bound for Australia illegally on two multi-day trawlers today.The trawler named “Senesha Duwa” with 67 people including 58 Tamils and 09 Sinhalese on board and the other named “Seloni Duwa” with 19 persons including 14 Tamils and 05 Sinhalese on board were intercepted 20 nautical miles off Chilaw. They are residents of Jaffna, Mullaithivu, Vavuniya, Kilinochchi, Chilaw, Mannar, Negombo and Anamaduwa. Among the people arrested are 79 men, 02 women and 05 children (02 boys and 03 girls). read more

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Speaker appoints PSC on CJ

Ministers Nimal Siripala de Silva, Anura Priyadarshana Yapa, Susil Premajayantha, Rajitha Senaratne, Dilan Perera, Wimal Weerawansa and Deputy Minister Neomal Perera have been appointed as the government representatives.Lakshman Kiriella, John Amaratunga, Vijitha Herath and R.Sampanthan have been appointed as the opposition party representatives. Parliament Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa today appointed a 11 member Parliament Select Committee (PSC) to to look at the impeachment motion on Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake.The committee will be headed by Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa and includes members from the government and the opposition. read more

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Army chief briefs new ICRC head on post war situation

Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva recalled his organization’s close working partnership that has been on with the delegation for years and acknowledged its support gratefully, particularly during the times of the conflict before May 2009. The new Head of the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) in Sri Lanka Ms Claire Meypraud had talks with army commander Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva today.Meypraud paid a courtesy call on the Commander of the Army at the Army Headquarters today. Towards the end of the courtesy meeting, exchange of mementos took place as tokens of close cooperation and understanding. Ms Meypraud, accompanied by her Deputy Head of the ICRC delegation, Irfan Sulejmani during her meeting with the Commander of the Army, was enthusiastic in receiving an update on the roles and tasks of the Army versus its interaction with the ICRC and Red Cross in Sri Lanka with special focus on the north and east. read more

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President reiterates no foreign judges in domestic process

However he says his Government has taken steps to ensure the local judiciary is allowed to operate freely without any political pressure.He also said that he has instructed the police to investigate some incidents where judges have been intimidated by groups not linked to the Government. (Colombo Gazette)Audio Playerhttp://colombogazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/LAW-Confernce-Wadduwa-HE-speech-FM.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume. The President had made a similar comment a few weeks ago to the international media and that created a storm with human rights groups insisting that he reconsider his stand.The President said that there were times the local judiciary faced various allegations and times where local judges were removed from office in an unfair manner. President Maithripala Sirisena has reiterated that he will not agree to have foreign judges in the local judicial process after investigating incidents related to the war.Speaking at the Law Conference in Wadduwa, the President said that he has faith in the local judiciary and he feels all that needs to be done is to strengthen the judiciary and ensure it is independent. International human rights groups have been calling on Sri Lanka to invite foreign judges to ensure the domestic process to investigate human rights abuses related to the war are credible. “If there is a need to conduct a judicial process after investigating human rights abuses, I will not agree to invite foreign judges to come to Sri Lanka and be involved in that process,” he said. read more

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British Minister Alok Sharma cancels Sri Lanka visit

Sharma later had talks with Samaraweera on the sidelines of the 34th session of the UNHRC. (Colombo Gazette) British Minister for Asia and the Pacific at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Alok Sharma has cancelled his visit to Sri Lanka this week.The British High Commission in Colombo said the visit was cancelled after the British Prime Minister announced a snap election to be held in June. The British government had told the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) recently to give Sri Lanka time to fully implement the October 2015 resolution. Apart from holding meetings with the Government, Sharma was to speak at the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute on April 21 on challenges in a post Brexit world. Sharma, told the Council during the high-level segment of the last session he welcomes Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s constructive engagement at the UNHRC.“We must give Sri Lanka time to fully implement the October 2015 resolution and post-conflict measures required to embed stability, reconciliation and justice,” he said. read more

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Electricians to get accreditation based on qualifications experience

According to the proposed mechanism, it is a  must to produce the certification of an electrician with the permanent license, which state that the installation was designed, wired and tested to receive the electrical connection to a domestic (up to 30A, single phase). For those who are qualified with National Vocational Qualification 3 (NVQ 3) and above can obtain a permanent license from CIDA within a day, after proving their knowledge at the evaluation facilitated by the Evaluation Panel.For those who are not professionally qualified, but have hands-on experience, are given the opportunity to prove the competency and to qualify for NVQ levels through a process facilitated by CIDA, so that they can apply for the permanent license.With the permanent license, electricians can design, wire, test, the installation of domestic wiring (30 amps Signal phase) and issue a certificate to get the electrical connection which is accepted by CEB and LECO. “With the mechanism in place, it is aimed to standardize the practice of the electricians to match with international standards and will encourage people who want to enter into this industry by transforming their social stigma to a social status.” Kumarasinghe said.PUCSL invites stakeholders views, suggestions, recommendations, concerns and comments related to the following areas;Categories/ classes of License to be issued and corresponding pre-requisite Qualifications.Eligibility Requirements for Licenses and the Responsibilities held.Suggestions on Structure of the Licensing Issuance Framework and Implementation.Accountabilities held by key stakeholders & consortium.Socio-Economic Impacts of the Licensing Issuance Framework Establishment.The proposed mechanism in detail is now available at www.pucsl.gov.lk for reference. Those who are interested can submit their written comments/submissions to the Commission by post/fax or e-mail (consultation@pucsl.gov.lk) and online via www.pucsl.gov.lk on or before 21st March 2018.Further, PUCSL plans to hold an oral submission on the same. The venue and the date of the meeting will be communicated to the interested parties at an early date. (Colombo Gazette) Sri Lanka has about 21000 electricians and data shows that only a few of them are qualified in National Vocational Qualification (NVQ). Most of the wiring and maintenance of the households and other premises are carried out by electricians who have no recognized qualifications but have experience through practice.With the introduction of the mechanism, all the electricians will be issued a temporary license to continue their work and that license will only be valid for three (03) years. Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL), the electricity sector regulator, is to establish an accepted professional status for electricians in the country through accrediting their qualifications and experience.The proposed mechanism was developed by PUCSL in collaboration with the Institution of Engineers Sri Lanka (IESL), Tertiary, Vocational Education Commission (TVEC) and Construction Industry Development Authority (CIDA), Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and Lanka Electricity Company (PVT) Limited (LECO). Electricians with permanent licenses can also carry-out the wiring, testing and installation of the three phase 30 amps & 60 amps installation, subject to the design by a chartered engineer.The proposed mechanism will also provide a career ladder for the electricians, according to their professional level and expertise, starting from apprentice, junior electrician, senior electrician, master electrician and utility electrician.The Utility electricians are recognized to install and maintain the distribution lines of 1000 Volt to 33000 Volt. Explaining the reasons behind the initiative taken, Director General of Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka, Damitha Kumarasingh said, “Sri Lanka has reported 106 electrocutions in the year 2017. 55 percent of the electrocutions have occurred due to the issues of wiring, maintenance and non-standards. With the system is in place, the professional status of the electricians will be uplifted as well as the safety and quality of the electrical installation will be assured.” PUCSL launched a public consultation on accrediting and licensing of electricians with a view of receiving the public, expertise and other stakeholder comments on the proposed mechanism. The comments will be accommodated to improve the proposed system. read more

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Sri Lanka and Oman seek to cooperate on oil and gas

During the Meeting, Sri Lanka and Oman reaffirmed the commitment to further consolidate and advance bilateral political and economic cooperation. The discussions focused on the follow-up action on the decisions made at the First Meeting of the Sri Lanka-Oman Bilateral Consultations held in Muscat in 2014, and new avenues for bilateral cooperation.The two sides agreed to work towards the establishment of business, trade and shipping links between Oman, as a gateway to the Middle East and Sri Lanka, as a hub of the Indian Ocean. The Sri Lanka delegation to the Bilateral Consultations was led by Secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Prasad Kariyawasam and the delegation of Oman was headed by the Under-Secretary for Diplomacy and Chief Master’s Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Oman Mahmood Awad Al Hassan. Senior Officials of both Foreign Ministries participated in the discussions with several line Ministries and agencies representing Sri Lanka joining as well. The two sides stressed the importance of continuing to work together at regional and multilateral fora for advancing shared interests. Consolidation of bilateral political relations through exchange of high-level visits was also discussed at the Meeting. A wide range of matters for mutual collaboration in the fields of trade; tourism; immigration and emigration; labour and manpower training; defence; agriculture; higher education; and culture were reviewed and discussed.Moreover, fisheries, sports, oil and gas were identified as new areas for possible future cooperation. It was also agreed to assist the establishment of a Sri Lanka-Oman Business Council between the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka and the Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry.The two sides also agreed to conclude an Agreement on Promotion and Reciprocal Protection of Investments at the earliest, and to consider entering into a MOU on Skills Development and Mutual Recognition of Qualifications to facilitate mobility of skilled workers from Sri Lanka to Oman. The visiting Omani delegation also called on Speaker Karu Jayasuriya and Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana during their stay in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka and Oman are seeking to cooperate on fisheries, sports, oil and gas in the future.During the Second Meeting of the Sri Lanka-Oman Bilateral Consultations, held in Colombo at senior officials’ level, an Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation and Prevention of Fiscal Evasion between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Sultanate of Oman was signed by the leaders of the respective delegations. read more

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More Ministers take oaths in new Government

More Ministers took oaths in the new Government before President Maithripala Sirisena this evening.Duminda Dissanayake took oaths as the Minister of Irrigation, Water Resources and Disaster Management, Dayasiri Jayasekara as the Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training, Piyasena Gamage as the State Minister of Youth, Women and Child Affairs, Lakshman Senewiratne as the State Minister of Defence, M. L. A. M. Hizbullah as the State Minister of Highways and Road Development, Mohan Lal Grero as the State Minister of Education and Higher Education, Sriyani Wijewickrama as the State Minister of Provincial Councils, Local Government, and Sports, Angajan Ramanathan as the Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Manusha Nanayakkara as the Deputy Minister of Labour and Foreign Employment, Indika Bandaranayake as the Deputy Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Sarathi Dushmantha as the Deputy Minister of Justice and Prison Reforms, Nishantha Muthuhettigamage as the Deputy Minister of Ports and Shipping and Kader Kader Masthan as the Deputy Minister of Resettlement, Rehabilitation, and Northern Development. (Colombo Gazette) read more

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Fume hoods will shut down this weekend

The fume hoods in Mackenzie Chown H and F block will be shut down on Saturday.The hoods will not be operational between 7 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. The shutdown is for annual fall repairs on the exhaust systems.Facilities Management advises that: All hood enclosures should be empty. If this is not practical, all bottles and containers in the hood must be closed tight. All containers in vented cabinets under hoods should be closed. This should be normal practice. Hoods that are not vented to the outside can be used (one filtered fume hood in Earth Sciences, all laminar flow hoods and all bio-containment hoods).Direct questions or concerns to Facilities Management customer service at 905-688-5550 x3717 or facilitiesmanagement@brocku.ca.Direct safety-related issues to Andy Prankevicius, research and academic safety officer, at 905-688-5550 x5390 or aprankevicius@brocku.ca. read more

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FAA puts out a call for pilots to test changes in Boeing

DALLAS — Federal safety officials are recruiting pilots from airlines around the world to test changes that Boeing is making to the flight-control software on the grounded 737 Max jet, according to two people briefed on the situation.The Federal Aviation Administration is asking that some of the pilots have relatively little experience on the Boeing 737, according to the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the testing plan hasn’t been announced.Testing will happen in flight simulators — not on actual Max jets, which remain grounded — and is designed to determine how pilots handle the software. Exact timing and details about the testing are unclear, but it will be done before the FAA recertifies the plane, according to one of the people.Boeing declined to comment.Boeing is rewriting the Max’s flight-control software after faulty sensor readings caused automated systems to push down the noses of planes that crashed in Indonesia and Ethiopia, killing 346 people.The changes will make automated nose-down movements less powerful and easier for pilots to overcome. The flight-control software, called MCAS, will also rely on two sensors instead of one. Boeing is also working to fix a separate problem that FAA test pilots discovered in June and that could also push the plane into a dive.Nearly 400 Max jets that were being flown by airlines around the world have been grounded since March, shortly after the second crash. Boeing hopes to submit all changes to the FAA in September and get the plane approved to fly in November.Chicago-based Boeing Co.’s stock rose Thursday after an analyst for financial-services firm Cowen said an FAA certification flight for the Max — a key milestone — could happen within six weeks.The shares rose $14.42, or 4.2%, to $354.41. They are up 10% this year, but that trails the 17% gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index. The shares are down 16% since the second crash, in March.The Max has damaged Boeing’s reputation and finances. Dozens of families of passengers killed in the accidents have sued the company.In July, Boeing reported a record loss of nearly $3 billion for the second quarter due to a $4.9 billion after-tax charge to cover the cost of compensating airlines that have been forced to cancel thousands of flights because of the grounding.___David Koenig can be reached at http://twitter.com/airlinewriterDavid Koenig, The Associated Press read more

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US Poland leaders to sign document on 5G cooperation

WARSAW, Poland — U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence says the U.S. and Poland will sign a joint declaration to co-operate on secure new 5G technology.Pence is in Warsaw filling in for President Donald Trump, who scrapped his trip at the last minute because of Hurricane Dorian.At a joint news conference following talks with President Andrzej Duda Monday, Pence announced the agreement would be signed later in the day.Pence said the agreement on a secure digital network will “set a vital example for the rest of Europe.”The signing comes amid a global battle between the U.S. and China’s Huawei, the world’s biggest maker of network infrastructure equipment.The Associated Press read more

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Bank of England holds rates amid acute Brexit uncertainties

LONDON — The Bank of England has kept its main interest rate unchanged at 0.75% as rate-setters await developments on the Brexit front.The nine members of the Monetary Policy Committee all voted in favour of keeping rates unchanged.In a statement Thursday, rate-setters said developments related to Britain’s departure from the European Union — due on Oct. 31 — are making economic data “more volatile.”They warned that in the event the country leaves the EU without a deal then the exchange would likely fall, while inflation would rise and growth would slow.The longer Brexit uncertainties last, the more likely it is that growth will fall further below potential, they added.The Associated Press read more

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UK PM Johnson Ive been model of restraint in Brexit debate

LONDON — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged calm as tempers flare in the debate over Britain’s departure from the European Union, even though tempers are flaring over what he said.A defiant Johnson told the BBC on Sunday that the “best thing for the country and for people’s overall psychological health would be to get Brexit done.”Johnson admitted that tensions were high as lawmakers discussed the prospect of Britain leaving the EU by Oct. 31. But he defended the use of words such as “surrender” act to describe an opposition law ordering a Brexit delay and claimed he’s been a “model of restraint” in speaking about Brexit.Johnson headed Sunday to the Conservative Party conference in Manchester, where the party was expected to endorse government plans to spend more on the country’s National Health Service.The Associated Press read more

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