Job quality heading south

Posted by & filed under Accounting Careers, Canadian Economy.

Description: More Canadians are becoming self-employed. And wages of those employed seem to be falling. A study by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce shows rather alarming trends in measures of job quality, looking at data from a 25 year span. Source: Globe and Date:  March 5, 2015 Link: Discussion Points: 1) How… Read more »

Costco beats Walmart

Posted by & filed under Accounting Theory, Corporate Strategy.

Description: Costco – the huge warehouse style retailer – beat Walmart and Target in sales growth in the most recent quarter. Costco was up over 8% versus about 1.5% for Walmart and 3.2% for Target. Perhaps in a bit of a surprise though, Costco shares fell about 0.1%. Source: Globe and Date:  March 5,… Read more »

Not ready for hackers

Posted by & filed under Accounting Careers, Auditing.

Description: A report released on Tuesday, February 24, by security firm FireEye showed that roughly 70 percent of companies suffering data breaches last year found out about it from someone outside the organization. Police agencies and customers, for example, may notify a company before anyone inside the organization realizes they have been hit by cyberattack…. Read more »

Can Canada afford it?

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government, Personal Tax.

Description: A report released by Canada’s Parliamentary Budget Officer is raising alarm regarding the government’s plan to double the limit on Tax Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs). Both the federal government and the provinces would eventually be losing billions in revenue each year as a result of the changes. With aging populations, this raises serious questions… Read more »

Bay goes beyond retail

Posted by & filed under Advanced Accounting, Intermediate Accounting.

Description: Hudson’s Bay Company is going beyond the retail sales stream in an effort to add value to its business. The company announced it has entered into joint ventures, one with an American company and the other here in Canada, in an effort to cash in on value locked in its real estate assets. The… Read more »

Big student loans write-off

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government, Financial Accounting.

Description: The Government of Canada is writing off about $300 million in student loans, most of which was defaulted on before 2009. The details were revealed in supplementary spending estimates tabled in Parliament on February 19. Jessica McCormick of the Canadian Federation of Students commented that the amount of the defaults points to a need… Read more »

Pension woes

Posted by & filed under Advanced Accounting, Canadian Economy, Financial Reporting and Analysis.

Description: Interest rates continue to fall, signalling bad times for pension funds and pension recipients. As rates fall, the present value of the liabilities in defined benefit pension plans increase. An increase in liablities, often means that a company must contribute more cash to the pension plan. Source: Globe and Date:  February 20, 2015… Read more »

SNC-Lavalin charged for bribery

Posted by & filed under Auditing, Ethics.

Description: SNC-Lavalin, the Canadian engineering giant, has been charged by the RCMP for bribery. These charges stem from SNC-Lavalin’s alleged bribes to Libyan officials of at least $47.7 million. The company could also face additional charges according to the Globe and Mail. Source: Globe and Date:  February 19, 2015 Link: Discussion Points: 1)… Read more »

Fines not enough

Posted by & filed under Ethics, Executive Compensation, Taxation.

Description: It seems that even big fines are not enough to prevent financial institutions from helping their clients hide from tax authorities. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists recently released  various details about HSBC’s Swiss operation, where “piles of cash” were hid from taxing authorities. Britain appears to have generated roughly $200 million in revenue… Read more »

Really, really, really smart t.v.

Posted by & filed under Data security, Ethics.

Description: Many were perhaps shocked this past week when Samsung revealed that while you are watching television, your television may be listening to you. While perhaps no one is quite sure what is going on in the mysterious cloud, Samsung’s new terms of use for its smart t.v. alerts users that spoken words and personal… Read more »