- the source for market opinions


June 25, 2019 | Eggs

It’s fair to say yesterday’s comment section convo unscored a theme: resentment. A whole generation of people genuinely feel short-strawed. They’re anti-corporate iconoclasts believing Boomers won the birth lottery, then fashioned an economic and financial system rigged in their favour. Pensions are gone. Careers are now gigs. Houses nobody can afford. Surely life was simpler […]

June 24, 2019 | Appathy

Let’s say you buy a parking lot, hire a grumpy attendant, build a little hut for the guy, pay the property taxes, erect signage and hope to make a few bucks. Then the people living down the street sign on with the Rover app, rent out their unused driveways during the day for half your hourly rate […]

June 21, 2019 | Fat Tax

What are the fairest taxes? Dumb question. The ones other people pay, of course. As we cruise towards a federal election in exactly four months and as the Americans wade into a presidential campaign, taxes are a big deal. In the last four years the Libs have gutted the contribution limit on the most popular […]

June 19, 2019 | Dr. Garth

The Doctor is IN. The waiting room is teeming. So much angst, and so little time before tee-off. Who’s first? “Thanks for the daily reading,” says Brock. “It helps get me through the day. Now the question.” When does it make sense to refinance your mortgage for more than is left owing, so you can […]

June 18, 2019 | Suck, Blow, Fail

Remember Generation Squeeze? The needy little moister org is demanding a host of things from government, including cheap day care, transit subsidies and student loan forgiveness as well as a wealth tax on Boomer real estate, so fairness may be restored to the nation. Yeah, fat chance. But they do have the attention of the […]

June 17, 2019 | Cracked

Well, it’s happening. The first bank – and the biggest – has dipped its key mortgage rate, which is a shot across Ottawa’s bow. On the weekend RBC trimmed the posted number for its five-year home loan by about a fifth of a point. Big deal? You bet. The cut is small, but it’s the […]

June 14, 2019 | The Gap (so far)

Somehow this turned into another Misery Week. So let’s put it out of its… misery… with another miserable post. And what could possibly be more depressing that Generation Squeeze? This consortium of professional whiners, moaners and wannabe adults, comprised of uber-educated basement-dwelling moisters who spend their days tweeting and texting about systemic age-related genocide have (naturally) […]

June 12, 2019 | Aspirations

As mentioned recently, this blog has an archive of 3,410 posts. That’s 2.5 million words, or the same as 42 books (remember those things?). Those posts have attracted over 610,000 comments – another 80 million words. And that doesn’t include the DELETED, the trashed or the ones telling me what to do with my orifices. […]

June 11, 2019 | The Choices

Yes, it’s Debt Week here at GreaterFool, making it tough to control the enthusiasm. But debt’s a big part of Canadian life now. We owe a ton. We save little. What could possibly go wrong? Here’s another point of comparison with the US, the country most like ours. If you’re a moister thinking about snagging a condo, […]

June 10, 2019 | The CPI

ADVISORY: This is the third in a questionable three-part series on the CPI, or Canada’s Poochedness Index©. It is not advisable for people with medical, debt, spousal or emotional issues to read past this point. Okay, you already went past it. Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate. Seriously. Recently the yield curve inverted. So what? So […]

June 9, 2019 | Politicians

A scant four months until the next federal election. Just two days more chances for the Bank of Canada to change interest rates – July 10th and September 4th. Financial markets have now booked in rate cuts for both Canada and the US by the end of the year. Given the latest jobs numbers (28,000 […]

June 7, 2019 | The Yogateers

Did you see the big headlines about jobs? Another 27,000 last month. The unemployment rate at a 43-year low. Just 5.4%. Over 450,000 new positions in the past year. And this atop 106,500 hires in April. Economists were slack-jawed, having forecast only 5,000. Some people muttered stuff about interest rates going up again, with a […]

June 6, 2019 | The Worried

Several years ago I watched a fellow investment advisor sit on a growing mountain of client cash. “Things are just too expensive,” he kept insisting. “The bond market tells me stocks are overvalued and the economy’s headed for recession.” Over the course of two years his clients made about 2% holding cash, a mess of […]

June 5, 2019 | The Campaign

So how, an anxious nation asks, have things been in Tranna lately? Aside from some guys running around in shorts making millions… pretty tepid. Not that you’d know it from the media, of course. “Sales come storming back,” was the real estate message broadcast to six million souls. And that made the agents happy. They […]

June 4, 2019 | The Last Refuge

The Trumpian trade war continues to roil. There’s a new casualty. Interest rates. Stock markets coursed higher Tuesday on word the boss of the Fed, America’s central bank, is open to lowering the cost of money as a defence against the damage the nation’s president is doing. In fact, the odds of a cut are […]

June 3, 2019 | Yields

Let’s have a post without mentioning Trump. Oops. Too late. While we’re on the topic, then, Mr. Tariff Man’s wild attack on Mexico surprised markets, hammered stocks and sent investors in the US and Canada scurrying under the protective skirts of government bonds. As equity values sagged, bond prices jumped – the best bond rally […]

June 2, 2019 | Tough Guys

The latest inflation is 2%. If you strip gas out (prices went down last month), the cost of living rises to 2.3%. When the impact of the carbon tax is known (it was just imposed in a few provinces, including Ontario), expect a bump. In other words when you can borrow money to buy real […]

May 31, 2019 | Take Cover

Well, it’s happened again. The one-man presidential wrecking gang has roiled the world. It will be interesting about eight inches from now to see how the red-hat brigade in the steerage section rescues their guy after this Trumpian mess. In case you missed it, the xenophobic American president, unable to get his own country to […]

May 30, 2019 | Give It Up

So yesterday a moister in Van told us why he and his squeeze bought a condo. On cue the crustaceans and paleos in the steerage section trashed them. (And we wonder why they hate us…) Because life moves on, there’ll always be people buying. To spawn. To nest. To scratch the societal itch for property. […]

May 29, 2019 | Earning the GVS

“Call me Pablo,” he said, “if you write about us. Now, Garth, would you please validate our decision to succumb to the hormones, or just lay on us for being fools?” Of course. S’what we do here. Validate. Ridicule. Embarrass. Irritate. And, on rare days, educate. Turns out Pablo & his love are some of […]

May 28, 2019 | Dr. Garth

The doctor is in. Who’s first? My husband and I have some big decisions to make and are hoping you might give us a little insight as a financial mentor. We are in the lucky position of selling our house in BC and moving to Manitoba with a nice profit. Now, we need to decide […]

May 27, 2019 | Cracks

Well, this was inevitable. There are now cracks in the federal Liberal caucus over – guess what? – the stress test. Word is that Lib MPs from both the GTA and Vancouver are pressuring finance minister Bill Morneau to trash or modify B-20. It’s negatively affecting middle class jobs, they allege (realtors, mortgage brokers, drywallers, […]

May 26, 2019 | The Escape

Some thoughts to start your week. Pay attention. There may be a test on Thursday. Is the exodus for real? This pathetic blog has whined for years about the bad housing choices people make. Many of those kids in their 600-square-foot highrise urban condo boxes will regret their purchases as new supply gushes onto the […]

May 24, 2019 | Perspectives

Being a minor celeb, but less than the Trivago guy, I get emails. Tons. Read them all, sometimes sharing a few with you. Naturally everyone has to include a MSU to get through the filter and make me feel worthy. Dog pictures help, too. This week’s been poignant, for reasons unknown. Here are some words […]

May 23, 2019 | Animal Spirits

The silent spring. It was shocking when environmentalists first pointed out the growing absence of song birds. (We’ll save the climate change debate for another day. It’s real, by the way.) Now, in terms of the most important assets citizens own, the more terrifying silence. The housing market’s in worse shape than official stats tell. […]

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