Nov 19 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories from selected Canadian newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
* A decision that promises to shape the course of Ontario’s growing labour strife with teachers will be waiting on Education Minister Laurel Broten’s desk Monday morning, in the form of three tentative deals signed this weekend.
The agreements give a glimmer of hope for labour peace, but they must still be approved by Broten, who insists that they be “substantively identical” to terms agreed with the English Catholic teachers’ union in July. Details of the deals were not released. ()
* Canada’s diplomats in Moscow will have to work another three years in an embassy compound that’s vulnerable to terrorist attack and the prying eyes of foreign spies, The Canadian Press has learned.
Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird was warned in an internal memo from a senior bureaucrat that Canada’s embassy in the Russian capital offers “almost no protection” against a terrorist attack. ()
Reports in the business section:
* Among the risks looming over Canada’s economy, from the U.S. fiscal cliff to Europe’s recession, inflation does not rank high on the list.
The pace of consumer price increases has been tame for the past half year, running at an annual pace of 2 percent or less since March. In recent months, core inflation has been lower than the Bank of Canada had expected, and the central bank now says inflation won’t pick up to its 2 percent target until the end of 2013, “somewhat later than previously anticipated”. ()
* Canadian real estate speculators have been on a spending spree in the United States over the past three years, buying up billions of dollars of foreclosed homes from Florida to California with an eye to renting those properties out and eventually cashing in on a rebound in home prices. Several companies have since gone public or are now laying the groundwork for initial public offerings. ()
* Awash in resource revenues and the blessings of high growth and low unemployment, Alberta said this past week it would nonetheless become the final province to succumb to the temptation of debt financing. After enjoying a virtually debt free ledger for decades, premier Alison Redford announced what amounted to a stunning shift in the province’s long standing policy when she told reporters:“If everything we do right now is funded fully with cash in the bank, then we are never going to build anything more in this province”. ()
* Several major retailers are taking the Quebec government to court over the provincial language watchdog’s insistence they modify their commercial brand names to include some French.
The retailers include some of the biggest brand names in North America - Walmart Stores Inc, Best Buy Co Inc and Costco Wholesale Corp. Their lawyers are expected in Quebec Superior Court on Thursday. ()
* John De Goey was considered a villain when he started arguing in the early 2000s that fee-based compensation was the necessary way of the future for Canada’s investment industry. The idea that financial advisors would have clients pay directly and transparently for their services was a slap in the face to the commission-based model that had long been their bread and butter.
Today the majority of Canadian advisors earn their living from “trailer fees” embedded in mutual funds so quietly that many investors believe the advice is free. Some people actually buy mutual funds without an adviser, in which case the fees are still charged. ()