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Toby Sanger

Toby Sanger

Economist with #CUPE, Canada's largest union. Fun with figures.

Articles by Toby Sanger

Much stronger conditions needed on federal wage subsidy program

March 30, 2020

The federal government has announced it is prepared to pay wages subsidies of up to 75% of employee wages for all private businesses and other employers, including non-profits, partnerships and charities that expect a 30% drop in revenues, up to a maximum of $847/worker per week and $11,011 over the three months.  The previously announced 10% wage subsidy was only available for smaller employers. 

There’s no question about it: this is a massive commitment that is likely to be the most expensive measure announced so far, and one of the most expensive federal government programs ever. 

The CD Howe estimated that a 75% wage subsidy for private employers would cost $6.3 billion a week, which works out to about $80 billion over three months.  This amount works out to over $2,000 for

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Much stronger conditions needed on federal wage subsidy program

March 30, 2020

The federal government has announced it is prepared to pay wages subsidies of up to 75% of employee wages for all private businesses and other employers, including non-profits, partnerships and charities that expect a 30% drop in revenues, up to a maximum of $847/worker per week and $11,011 over the three months.  The previously announced 10% wage subsidy was only available for smaller employers. 

There’s no question about it: this is a massive commitment that is likely to be the most expensive measure announced so far, and one of the most expensive federal government programs ever. 

The CD Howe estimated that a 75% wage subsidy for private employers would cost $6.3 billion a week, which works out to about $80 billion over three months.  This amount works out to over $2,000 for

Read More »

Making the COVID19 Wage Subsidy Program work better for workers

March 30, 2020

With the federal government is increasing its temporary wage subsidy to 75%, other reforms are needed to ensure the public funding goes to maintain workers, and not pad the profits of businesses. 

In the face of the COVID19 crisis, the Canadian government has done a very good job of both limiting the spread of the virus and putting in place measures to prevent a health pandemic from also turning into an economic pandemic.

On the economic side, Prime Minister Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau took important steps to reassure individuals and businesses that the federal government would “do whatever it takes” to support them, ensure sick and emergency leave for workers that need it, provide liquidity to financial markets, enable individuals and employers to defer tax and

Read More »

Making the COVID19 Wage Subsidy Program work better for workers

March 30, 2020

With the federal government is increasing its temporary wage subsidy to 75%, other reforms are needed to ensure the public funding goes to maintain workers, and not pad the profits of businesses. 

In the face of the COVID19 crisis, the Canadian government has done a very good job of both limiting the spread of the virus and putting in place measures to prevent a health pandemic from also turning into an economic pandemic.

On the economic side, Prime Minister Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau took important steps to reassure individuals and businesses that the federal government would “do whatever it takes” to support them, ensure sick and emergency leave for workers that need it, provide liquidity to financial markets, enable individuals and employers to defer tax and

Read More »

CLC Senior Economist Job Opening

September 14, 2018

There’s an exceptional opportunity for a bright and critical-minded economist who is as passionate about social justice and working on behalf of unions and working people as they are about working with spreadsheets: CLC Senior Economist.
Application deadline September 21st.   More details and job posting here.
Enjoy and share:

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Ford Plan for Ontario – Potential Employment Impacts

June 4, 2018

Ontario Conservative leader Doug Ford finally released a partially costed version of his election promises in his Plan for Ontario in the last week before the election. This includes approximately $7.6 billion in tax cuts and revenue reductions and a net $500 million reduction in annual spending.[I]
At the same time, Ford has also promised that “we will balance (the budget) maybe the third or fourth year” e.g. by 2021/22. While Ford has claimed he wouldn’t lay off public sector workers—unlike his predecessor Tim Hudak who promised he’d lay off 100,000—with his additional billions in tax cuts, it will be impossible to balance Ontario’s budget in three or four years without job losses.
This analysis provides best guess estimates of the employment impact of Ford’s promises using economic

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Ontario’s Electricity Sector II: Political Economy Update

April 8, 2017

This is a third guest post by Edgardo Sepulveda, who is a Toronto-based expert in telecommunications and regulatory economics.  Twitter: @E_R_Sepulveda

By Edgardo Sepulveda
In my previous post of January 29 I described how decisions by different Ontario governments gave rise to excess electricity generation with an inflated cost structure, leading to higher electricity prices and increased inequality. Since then, the Ontario Minister of Energy delivered a “mea culpa” speech on February 24 (the “Minister’s Speech”) that was followed on March 2 by a Liberal Government announcement to reduce electricity prices starting June (the “Liberal Plan”). The Liberal Plan is currently in the form of a press release and hence the Government will be required to introduce proposed legislation to give it

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Can Capitalists Afford a Trumped Recovery? Guest post by Jonathan Nitzan & Shimshon Bichler

February 2, 2017

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Ontario’s Electricity Sector: Privatization and deregulation

January 30, 2017

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