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Hilliard MacBeth

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Author of "When the Bubble Bursts: Surviving the Canadian Real Estate Crash"

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Rapid inflation reared its ugly head this month, as the Consumer Price Index hit 2.6 percent gain for the last year. The price increase for energy was closer to 15 percent, while food was almost 4 percent. If the CPI keeps rising at this pace, as some predict, interest rates will rise. What will central […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Canadian banks want the government to take measures to halt the latest surge in home prices. Several bank CEOs and economists are urging the government of Canada to slow the runaway housing bubble where prices are advancing at a 15 percent annual rate after inflation. Will the government make bold moves to halt housing mania? […] Radio - Can Alberta pivot economy away from raw oil?

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The Toronto condo market is the centre of the Canadian real estate investor world. The amateur investor-landlord makes up as much as 50-60 percent of all condo ownership. As rents have been falling steadily for a couple of years, starting even before the 2020 recession, condo owners are wondering if they should hang on or […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Canadian population growth gets too much credit for rising house prices. In fact, in Calgary and Edmonton, house prices declined or stayed flat while population grew much faster than the Canadian average. But now Canadian population growth is slowing. Can population growth explain house price increases? Recent data from Statistics Canada show a significant decline […] Radio - Is Trudeau going to slap capital gains tax on your home?

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Volkswagen drops the gloves with Tesla in a direct challenge to lead the EV market by 2030. Herbert Diess, CEO, held a battery day presentation this week, announcing a major push into the EV market, where Tesla has been the leader until now. Will Volkswagen take over Tesla’s number one spot? I thought the hockey […]

March 12th, 2021 | Value Versus Growth

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The stock market rally on growth stocks that started 12 years ago continued this week. Value stocks continue to lag growth stocks by the widest margin on record. Is it time for value to outshine growth again? Last week I wrote about Berkshire Hathaway and Warren Buffett. Buffett is recognized as one of the greatest value […] Radio - Has Covid killed the shopping mall forever?

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Warren Buffett released his annual letter, reviewing how Berkshire Hathaway (BH) performed in 2020. One interesting portion includes a breakdown of the company’s main assets. There are four main investments which he calls the “family jewels”. These are the railway (BNSF), Berkshire Hathaway Energy (BHE), the property/casualty insurance companies and BH’s ownership of 5.4 percent […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The stance of the Federal Reserve chair, Jerome Powell, as confirmed publicly this week, is for continued support for the economy, as 10 million jobs are still missing. A year ago the Fed lit a fire under prices for assets like stocks with its expansion of credit and extremely low interest rates. At some point […] Radio - The new Tesla a real head snapper

February 19th, 2021 | A Commodity Super-Cycle

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The price of base metals, especially copper and nickel, are known as indicators of future economic growth. While the validity of that relationship is in doubt, it makes sense that base metals would move higher with an expectation for rapid economic growth. Is the recent surge in these metal prices predicting a robust economy?   […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Many corporations are announcing new sustainability or net-zero emissions targets, by a set date, usually 2050. More than 620 companies announced a science-based target in 2020. The total for 2021 will be even higher. As they struggle to meet these targets billions of dollars will be invested to reduce carbon emissions and to purchase offsets. […] Radio - Will Electric Vehicles Be Able to Deal With Canadian Winters?

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The unprecedented run of increased government deficits continues apace in 2021. Governments and central banks have decided that borrowing for stimulus during the recession is more important than worrying about debt levels. How does this rapid acceleration in debt get resolved? I wrote about the inflation risk in November 2020, suggesting that higher inflation might be a […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - The housing bubble has become enormous in these three countries, and when these bubbles burst, it will be very painful. Canada, Australia and New Zealand continue to defy the odds as house prices move further into unaffordable territory. Are these house prices justified?     Source: Bank for International Settlements From 1970 to 2020 New […] Radio - Alternative Energy, Oil and Gas

January 22nd, 2021 | President Biden Goes Green

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - President Joe Biden plans a serious push into clean energy, with significant acceleration in the adoption of renewable energy in the U.S. The stock market anticipated a Biden win in November 2020, with shares of most companies in the clean energy sector surging far ahead of the broad market. Will President Biden satisfy expectations for […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - A $12.5 million investment in clean energy earned an “accidental” profit of $200 million from a blank-check company. Here is how that works. Blank-check companies — SPACs or Special Purpose Acquisition Companies — are proliferating, a strong signal that this market has gone wild. Blank-check vehicles are shell companies used to take a private company […] Radio - If stock markets blow up, how bad could it be?

January 8th, 2021 | Grantham Predicts a Crash

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Investment guru Jeremy Grantham, founder of a major investment firm based in Boston, delivered a warning this week. He says that the U.S. market is in the late stages of a major bubble. He predicts losses in the stock market comparable to the post-2000 period when the tech-heavy NASDAQ index declined 82 percent over two […] Radio - Robinhooders, no commission trades costly

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - While 2020 has been a very difficult year for all of us, I have learned that taking the time to make a gratitude list is always helpful. Many years ago, I was complaining about things that I felt were not going my way and an older and wiser person said to me, “What are you […]

Hilliard's Weekend Notebook - Canada’s new clean energy plan was unveiled on December 11, 2020. The Hydrogen Strategy for Canada came out this week. Every region of Canada has the potential to produce hydrogen, from several different sources. Will hydrogen play a key role in saving Canada’s energy industry? The Hydrogen Strategy is part of the Trudeau government’s bold […]
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