There was a lot of chatter about Ontario’s credit rating last week when, in a not-so-surprising move, Moody’s Corporation changed Ontario’s debt outlook from stable to negative.
Let’s be clear, this was not a downgrade in the credit rating, as some of have suggested. It’s more like the equivalent of a sad face emoticon – one way a credit rating agency has to express displeasure.
It was a statement made one day before the newly elected provincial government was set to deliver its Speech from the Throne – a speech that didn’t waiver from the promises made during the provincial election campaign that yielded this government a majority mandate. ...Read more
Tags: debt·Economy & Economic Indicators·Ontario
It seems like every newly elected Premier in Ontario who wins on even a slightly progressive platform feels like the first step in office is to help the boys on Bay Street relax.
And so it is, perhaps, that Premier-elect Kathleen Wynne came out of the gates post-election with two primary (albeit mixed) messages: she’ll promote an activist government but “there’s no new money” for even modest raises in the public sector.
Here’s the thing: a broad swath of commentators agree Wynne managed to do the unexpected by securing a majority government. ...Read more
The Ontario election is nearing its end and by Thursday night we will know the makeup of the next provincial government.
In some ways, this election featured a lot of substantive debate and policy discussion. For instance, a lot of focus was placed on the relative merit and credibility of the party platforms (and costing of those platforms).
On the other hand, a lot of important issues didn’t get much air time. ...Read more
Both before the budget was tabled and during its presentation, Finance Minister Carlos Leitão spoke of “rigour” and “responsibility,” but never used the term “austerity.” Yet, this is truly an austerity budget: many government departments will be receiving less next year than they have this year. Here is a summary of the budget cuts: ...Read more
Tags: Austerity·Leitão·Plan Nord
On Tuesday, the Parliamentary Budget Office released their long awaited costing and distributional analysis of the tax measures implemented since the Harper government has been in power. In essence, they asked what is the cost of these tax cuts, who benefits, and to what degree.
The Price Tag of the Tax Cuts
The total cost of the tax cuts implemented by this government is $30.4 Billion in 2014 ($17.1B on the income tax side and $13.3B from the GST/HST cuts). This is in addition to the cuts to the federal corporate income tax, which the PBO report did not look at but Jim Stanford has estimated to cost around $13 billion in annual revenue. ...Read more
Tags: benefits·canada·Federal Government·PBO·tax·Taxes and Tax Cuts
When it comes to attracting and supporting businesses in Ontario, there’s one thing missing from the election platforms of Ontario’s three main party leaders: an acknowledgement that tax cuts don’t work.
Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak promises a 30% cut to the corporate income tax rate in Ontario. The rate would decrease from 11.5% to 8%.
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath promises to reduce the small business tax to 3% (it currently sits at 4.5%) and offer a $5,000 tax credit to business for each job created in Ontario. ...Read more
Tags: Ontario Election
The day following his election as Premier of Quebec, Philippe Couillard ordered a report on the state of the province’s public finances from Luc Godbout and Claude Montmarquette, two economists who have advocated for tax cuts and fee hikes in recent years. This unusual procedure led to the usual conclusion, which has recurred every time power has changed hands over the last 15 years: there is a gaping hole in public finances left by the previous administration. This entire masquerade is obviously put on to prepare Quebecers for the budget that the government will table in June. Let’s see how a Finance Minister creates the political space needed to act however he pleases. ...Read more
Tags: Finance Minister·Godbout·Hydro-Québec·Montmarquette·public finances·quebec
This year’s budget forecasts a deficit of $12.5 Billion. It commits to a smattering of public sector investments over and above the previously committed spending and proposes tax increases totaling $900 million in additional revenue this budget year.
Tax increases include: ...Read more
- a 1 percentage point income tax increase on income between $150,000 and $220,000 and a 2 percentage point increase on income between $220,000 and $514,000. This is a change that comes on the heels of a new report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that recommends Canada tax high income earners or risk exacerbating the growing income gap between the rich and the rest that is currently the second fastest growing among OECD nations. Total additional revenue: $635 million
Tags: Ontario budget 2014
You may be forgiven for feeling like you already know what’s in today’s Ontario budget – it had more leaks than a sieve in the weeks leading up to budget day.
There weren’t really any big surprises in the budget, but reading it in its entirety makes one thing crystal clear: the Wynne government is getting election battle ready.
This is very much an election budget.
It gives multiple nods to NDP Leader Andrea Horwath’s insistence that middle-income Ontarians be spared tax and fee increases. ...Read more
Tags: Ontario·Ontario budget 2014