Canada among top 10 most livable countries
With almost 200 countries in the world being in the top 10 is a real achievement. Based on figures from the United Nations Human Development Index Canada ranks 8th in the world for ‘liveability’. The index ranks countries on three key markers; having a healthy and long life; being knowledgeable; and having a good standard of living. Income is an important part of the equation with the number one country, Norway, having an income per capita of $63,909; Canada’s is $41,887. Among the other factors that count towards the ranking our life expectancy is 81.5 year while schooling duration is 15.9 years. Canada beats Singapore and Denmark in the top 10, but comes in below New Zealand (7), Germany (6), US (5), Netherlands (4), Switzerland (3), Australia (2) and Norway (1). Read the full story.
Time to fix the housing crisis
Affordability is a key issue for the housing market in Canada with 25 per cent of householders spending nearly a third of their income on housing and 200,000 a year recorded as homeless. Writing in the Chronicle Herald Brad Woodside, president of The Federation of Canadian Municipalities, says that now is the time to fix the housing crisis. The Federation has created a forum for debate on housing and the economy bringing together non-profit, health, industry and private sectors to work towards affordable housing for everyone. They aim to give better opportunities for those at the bottom end of the ladder and create a smoother transition through the rental market and into property ownership. Read the full story.
Canadians believe they will have to work until they die
One fifth of Canadians say they will never retire. The figures from a study by the Conference Board of Canada show the large percentage of people reaching retirement age who don’t have enough savings to stop working. Sixty per cent of those between 55 and 64 and 40 per cent of those above 65 say they haven’t saved enough. Although these are worrying figures for the current crop of baby boomers, it seems that younger Canadians are already doing things differently. The survey reveals that a third consider plans for retirement a priority with a quarter already having plans in place. Read the full story.
US pending home sales slightly better
The level of contracts signed for new US home sales in September only saw a modest increase, according to new figures from the National Association of Realtors. The market south of the border has been limping to recovery but has been affected by low wage rises and tight restrictions on home loans. Mortgage rates have fallen and some of the tighter lending rules have been relaxed so the prediction is for a stronger uptick in sales in the coming months. Read the full story.