Where are millions missing? – Business News



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February 5, 2019 / 12:41 | Story:
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WestJet Airlines Ltd. says strong demand, higher salaried passengers and its new ultra low cost subsidiary will increase revenues by 2019 as the company continues its transition from regional airline to international carrier.

"We're not seeing any potential slowdown in our reserve curve," said John Weatherill, vice president for pricing and revenue.

Despite tight competition and volatile fuel prices, the Calgary-based company plans to increase revenue per available seat – a metric of the amount of money each seat in the plane generates – by two to four percent by 2019.

Economy's premium passenger revenue rose 70 percent last year, said company chief executive Ed Sims.

"It's the first time I've seen reports from analysts using the word ahead in the 12 months I've been on paper," Sims said. "But we are incredibly aware of the hard work ahead of us."

The airline is starting to reap the benefits of higher fares, which add up to several advantages such as extra legroom and meals on demand, and additional food and luggage fees. The proportion of WestJet passengers who opted to buy a higher than the lowest rate available rose to 36% in the fourth quarter, up from 6% at the beginning of the year, Sims said.

The 23-year-old airline plans to increase passenger capacity by 6 to 8 percent – one percentage point lower than its previous guidance – largely through three Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft embarking on continuous service from Calgary to Dublin. Paris and London Gatwick Airport this spring.

Intercontinental flights will provide the first of 10 expected Dreamliners in a business passenger offering that challenges Air Canada's transatlantic domain.

Intense competition remains a concern. Newly expanded Flair Airlines, Canadian Canada Jetlines Ltd. and Air Canada's low-cost Rouge are filling the economic airspace where WestJet flew with its eight-month, ultra-low-cost Swoop.

"We still see risks related to the increase [ultra-low-cost carrier] competition, work and execution around the company's international growth strategy, "said National Bank Financial analyst Cameron Doerksen.

Sims said Swoop will expand its fleet to 10 aircraft from six in 2019.

After a turbulent year, labor relations still represent a potential obstacle. WestJet is now in talks with two unions representing the dispatchers and their regional airline pilots, while talks with flight attendants are scheduled to begin this year as well. The company is also holding internal negotiations with its mechanics.

Canada's second-largest airline saw the aftermath of labor fighting last May when WestJet pilots voted in favor of the strike before the Air Line Pilots Association and the company agreed to a settlement two weeks later. The initial threat scared potential passengers and caused discounted fare deals to cost the carrier "tens of millions of dollars" during the second and third quarters, Sims said last year.

"Throughout 2018, we came across the combination of obstacles that have resulted in our business delivering results well below what we could and should accomplish," he said on Tuesday.

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Canada's largest crypto-currency purse has received protection from its creditors on Tuesday as it deals with the consequences of its founder's death and the virtual company's inability to gain access to $ 180 million in digital assets that would be blocked on your laptop.

Gerald Cotten, CEO and sole director of the Vancouver-based QuadrigaCX trading platform, traveled to India on Dec. 9 when he died suddenly from complications of Crohn's disease, according to court documents.

His wife, Jennifer Robertson, filed a sworn statement at the Nova Scotia Supreme Court that Cotten was the only person with access to the laptop. She says she researched her home in Fall River, N.S., where he conducted most of her business, and was unable to find passwords or business records.

QuadrigaCX owes about 115,000 of its users $ 70 million in cash and $ 180 million in Bitcoins and other crypto-coins – based on market prices in December.

On Tuesday, Judge Michael Wood also granted QuadrigaCX a 30-day suspension, which prevents prosecutions against the company.

QuadrigaCX's lawyer, Maurice Chiasson, said the orders were needed to bring stability to a chaotic case punctuated by "threats, veiled or not" of legal action.

"This is an attempt to call a time," he told the court, adding that the decision of QuadrigaCX's newly appointed directors to close the site on January 28 caused "a lot of panic."

In his presentation to the court, Chiasson said that dealing with the unregulated and secret world of the crypto-coins trade proved to be difficult for his lawyers team.

At one point, he described the challenge of tracking third-party payment companies that may have digital assets owned by QuadrigaCX.

"We're still struggling to figure out who they are," he said. "We still think … there are up to 180 million dollars in crypto-coins floating … There are many moving parts to that."

The company may have access to about $ 30 million in bank checks, but regular financial institutions have made it clear they are worried about handling these funds, Chiasson told the court.

Over the weekend, Chiasson said his company learned that the so-called black bank may have $ 11 million in crypto-crash due to QuadrigaCX's creditors.

Chiasson also suggested that reaching the 115,000 lenders affected by QuadrigaCX's insolvency could be another challenge because those who deal in crypto-currency get their information from online chat rooms anonymous.

"They do not immediately know what is real and what is not," he said.

Judicial documents show that QuadrigaCX has been facing liquidity problems for the past year, but a major issue arose in January 2018 when CIBC froze about $ 25.7 million of its funds held in a third-party payment processor .

That money was delivered to the processor, Costodian, but they did not deposit the bank draft, according to court documents.

QuadrigaCX and its affiliated companies are registered in British Columbia but do not have offices, bank accounts or employees, and a handful of contractors.


February 5, 2019 / 10:42 | Story:
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Fiat Chrysler is collecting more than 660,000 heavy trucks worldwide because a loose nut can cause loss of steering control.

The recall covers Ram 3500 pickups from 2013 to 2017, as well as 2500 pickups and 3500 chassis cabins from 2014 to 2017.

The company says it is aware of eight accidents and one injury that could be related.

Fiat Chrysler does not yet have a date for owners to be notified. Dealers will inspect a steering linkage nut. If it is tight, it will be welded to a sleeve to hold it in place. If it is loose, a steering assembly will be replaced.

Most trucks are in the US and Canada.

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February 5, 2019 / 10:05 AM | Story:
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Someone is facing the Goliath television, with a prominent competitor saying on Monday that Netflix is ​​fooling the public about what a success is and what it is not.

John Landgraf, chief executive of FX Networks, who often points to excess TV with script, said Netflix is ​​using clouded measurements to claim a growing dominance among viewers. It's an approach he said reflects a disturbing arrogance of Silicon Valley.

Applying long-used industry standards on Netflix, "their true batting average would be seen as blank," Landgraf said.

The streaming service overthrew the TV industry with a schedule beyond any other outlet. This year, Netflix also realized its goal of winning an Oscar nomination for best film, for the movie "Rome."

But success does not necessarily result from an "endless money cannon," as Landgraf described spending on what he called "monopoly titans" in Silicon Valley.

Netflix's claim that 40 million households worldwide watched the "You" series is suspect, Landgraf said, claiming that the number of users in the United States would be only 8 million if the industry's average audience standard was applied. The streaming service generally refuses to release audience numbers, emphasizing subscriber growth now at more than 130 million worldwide, with nearly 60 million of those in the United States.

"By creating a myth that they used data to find the magic bullet of guaranteed commercial success that eluded everyone else since the creation of television, they gave the impression that the vast majority of the programs on their platform are working … and that they have or will soon have more hits than anyone else, "said Landgraf.

Netflix declined to comment on Monday. The company said in a profit letter that it tells the viewer if they "substantially complete at least one episode."

Landgraf, who dismissed the measure as meaningless, said that a show like "Stranger Things" is correctly quoted by Netflix as a "home run" audience, but called it an outlier.

FX is coming off a good year, with a wealth of Emmy and other awards for shows, including "The Americans" and "The Murder of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story." Landgraf said he was optimistic about the future of FX, as Walt Disney Co. is preparing to acquire 21st Century Fox, the channel's parent company.

Netflix puts its money where its mouth is: in 2018, the streaming platform said it was spending $ 8 billion in programming, the vast majority original. Since 2014, Netflix and other less robust streamers have increased by almost 400%, compared to a 1% decline in transmission and a 32% increase in paid cables, according to FX research.

The volume does not guarantee quality, no matter what the Netflix message, Landgraf said in a question and answer session with critics who were part of the upcoming series promotion, including "Better Things" and "Legion."

"The other side of taking hundreds of at-bat is that you're going to have a lot of takedowns. So naturally, Netflix has made and launched a number of consumer flaws," he said. "But by reporting singles as if they were home runs, and without ever reporting a single blow, they undermined" their complaints.

"One way or another, the truth will be revealed, as it always does," said Landgraf, who kept his customary and somewhat professorial tone throughout his Netflix dissection. He urged critics to resent what he called "handpicked data" and wait for third-party measurements.


February 5, 2019 / 7:32 am | Story:
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President Donald Trump plans to appoint David Malpass, a critic of the World Bank's Trump government, to lead the institution.

This is according to a senior government official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to publicly comment on personal decisions.

Trump should make an announcement later this week.

Malpass, the undersecretary for international affairs at the Treasury Department, has been an acute critic of the World Bank, especially because of its lending to China.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders declined to confirm that Malpass is the president's choice to lead the institution on Tuesday.

"When the president is ready to make this announcement, he certainly will," Sanders said. "I can tell you if he chooses David, he'll be a great choice. Highly respected and a strong team member."

Malpass would succeed Jim Yong Kim, who announced in January that he is leaving office three years before his term expires.

The final decision on a successor to Kim will be taken over by the bank's board.

Politician was the first to report the appointment.

The World Bank was founded in 1944 with the task of strengthening the economies of nations devastated by World War II. The first beneficiary of a World Bank loan was France.

The bank, whose leader is US-appointed and has always been a US citizen, has since shifted its focus from reconstruction to development, extensively in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Kim's unexpected exit will likely become a contentious fight between the Trump government and other countries that believe the United States exerts much influence over the Washington-based bank.

The White House said last month that Ivanka Trump will participate in the nomination process.


February 5, 2019 / 5:19 am | Story:
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WestJet Airlines Ltd. said it raised $ 29.2 million in the fourth quarter from $ 47.8 million in the year-ago period.

The Calgary-based airline says profit totaled 26 cents per diluted share for the three months ended Dec. 31, compared with 41 cents per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Revenue in the last three months of 2018 totaled $ 1.19 billion, up from $ 1.12 billion a year earlier.

Analysts, on average, were expecting a profit of 13 cents a share for the quarter and revenue of $ 1.19 billion, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

For the full year, WestJet says it earned $ 91.5 million or 80 cents per diluted share, down from $ 279.1 million or $ 2.38 per diluted share in 2017.

Revenue totaled $ 4.73 billion in 2018, up from $ 4.51 billion.


February 4, 2019 / 16:27 | Story:
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New Jersey gambling regulators say their sports bets have lost $ 4.6 million to $ 34.9 million in Super Bowl bets, the first major sports event for bettors since the sports game was legalized in the state last year .

The New Jersey Enforcement Division in New Jersey reported Monday that the state's casinos and horse tracks paid $ 39.5 million to those who won bets. Many punters supported the New England Patriots, who beat the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 Sunday night and covered the 2 1/2 point mark.

Nevada, which had an effective monopoly on sports betting until the Supreme Court ruled last year that states could allow, should disclose its Super Bowl betting totals on Monday.

Joe Asher is executive director of William Hill US, which manages sports betting at two casinos and a racetrack in New Jersey. He says Sunday in the Super Bowl was by far the biggest day of the company in the state in terms of stakes. He says that the book has come to an end and also had a record day of registrations and mobile betting.

DraftKings, which manages mobile betting in New Jersey along with a personal waiting room at Resorts Casino, also set a new record for handling. Spokesman James Chisholm said the company paid about $ 11 million to win bets on customers, "and had a small loss of just seven digits."

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More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL


February 4, 2019 / 11h28 | Story:
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A court placed Mike Weir Wine Inc. in bankruptcy, as the wine producer owes more than $ 6 million.

Judicial documents say that the corporation that produced, marketed and sold wine from a winery in Beamsville, USA, which closed around April 2018, owes the champion Masters champion about $ 2.2 million and to RBC about $ 4.3 million.

Judge Hainey of the Ontario Supreme Court appointed BDO Canada Ltd. on Jan. 30 after Weir filed a petition in early January asking the court to make a sale that would allow the buyer to take advantage of the spring. season.

Judicial documents say a Robert McCown-related company became the owner of 15 percent of the company's stock in 2013 and the remainder of its stock in October 2017.

The corporation issued three promissory notes for Weir on October 20, 2017 that would be returned one year later, but court documents claim that it has not paid what now amounts to about $ 2.2 million – some of which are secured against the winery and its physical assets.

Part of the debt would be forgiven if the winery were sold at the time the payment was due in the notes and the guaranteed notes were paid in full.

Following Weir's request, McCown called for a brief delay to allow the negotiation and closing of a sale to a potential wine-shop buyer who intends to make an offer of more than $ 7 million-enough to pay off the company's debts.

He says the claim that the winery is in danger and needs a receiver to protect it "is incorrect."

He says the winery has been listed for sale since the end of 2017, but this is the first buyer who has indicated it will bid.


February 4, 2019 / 09:44 | Story:
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General Motors says it has largely completed job cuts in Canada as part of a broader restructuring.

The company said last October it would offer acquisitions to 18,000 white-collar workers in its operations in North America as part of cost-cutting efforts.

GM Canada spokeswoman Jennifer Wright says salary reductions for Canadian employees have been met primarily through voluntary incentive packages.

Wright says the company expects to have a "modest" number of other wage cuts completed soon, but declined to provide details.

US media reports said the company planned to lay off at least 4,000 salaried workers in North America as of Monday.

At the time of the announced restructuring, GM had about 2,000 salaried employees in Canada as part of about 50,000 salaried employees in North America.


February 4, 2019 / 8:58 am | Story:
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The Vancouver real estate market, which has been on fire, continued to cool last month as home sales fell to the lowest level in January in ten years.

The Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board says that 1,103 homes were sold last month at Metro Vancouver, down 39.3% from the same month last year.

Compared to January, January sales increased by 2.9% compared to December 2018.

The board says that home sales last month were 36.3% below the 10-year average of January sales, and the lowest sales volume in January since 2009.

The composite reference price for a property, which includes outstanding properties, housing and condominiums, fell 4.5% from the prior year to $ 1,019,600.

Sales of independent houses fell 30.4% a year, while the reference price fell 9.1% from January 2018 to $ 1,453,400.

The reference price of an attached home last month fell 0.3 percent from a year earlier to $ 800,600, while the benchmark price of a condominium fell 1.7 percent to $ 658,600.

The council says real estate prices on all types of real estate have fallen over the region in the past seven months, pressured by the federal government's mortgage stress test that tightened real estate buying rules last year.

"This measure, coupled with an increase in mortgage rates, has led to up to 25% of the buying power of many home buyers trying to enter the market," board chairman Phil Moore said in a statement.


February 4, 2019 / 8:55 am | Story:
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The Pembina Pipeline Corp. says it is moving ahead with its joint venture with Petrochemical Industries Co. of Kuwait to build an integrated propane dehydrogenation facility and polypropylene modernization facility in Alberta.

The project is budgeted at $ 4.5 billion, including mills and support facilities.

Pembina's stake will be $ 2.5 billion, including a 50% stake in the joint venture, which will own the plants, and a 100% stake in support facilities.

The facility will be located next to Pembina's freshwater fractionation complex and will consume about 23,000 barrels per day of propane.

It will have a nominal capacity of 550,000 tons of polypropylene per year.

The plant is expected to be up and running by mid-2023.


February 4, 2019 / 7:44 am | Story:
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Employers and port workers in Montreal are preparing for a battle over the definition of "essential service" amid ongoing negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement.

The Maritime Employers' Association asked Canada's Industrial Relations Council in October to review whether dockers perform essential work in an attempt to protect docks from strike threats as the hearings began this morning.

A decision establishing certain port services, such as the movement of prescription drugs, as "essential" would prevent a total strike or blockade in the interests of public safety or security, in accordance with federal labor law.

Local union president Michel Murray argues that work on the quay is not essential to the health and safety of Canadians and that hauliers can turn to other ports in the event of a strike.

Employer spokesman Yves Comeau is raising the specter of scarcity of drugs, food, seeds and fertilizers as a health risk to the community, as well as the economic impact.

In December, the union voted 99.5 percent in favor of a strike mandate, which can normally be exercised at any time during the ongoing contract negotiations. But the employers' association avoided the move with its request to the Industrial Relations Council two months earlier. No strike or blockade can occur until a decision is made, say both sides.

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