VANCOUVER – Drivers who cause crashes or have fewer than 15 years of experience will pay more for vehicle insurance in British Columbia as part of a sweeping plan to overhaul how premiums are calculated.The provincial government introduced the proposed changes on Thursday to modernize the system used by the Crown auto insurance corporation, which hasn’t been updated in decades.If the changes are approved by the B.C. Utilities Commission, two-thirds of drivers will pay less than they otherwise would while one-third will pay more, said Attorney General David Eby.The current model to calculate rates used by the Insurance Corporation of B.C. is “broken,” he said.“From now on, British Columbians can have more confidence that if they drive safely and don’t cause crashes, the rates they have to pay will much more closely represent the risk they actually represent on the road,” he said.Nearly 40 per cent of drivers would see up to a $50 reduction in their annual premiums, while 15 per cent would see more than a $100 reduction, the province said, adding that just over 10 per cent would see an up to $50 increase and 17 per cent would see their rates hiked more than $100.The adjustments would take effect in September 2019, although some elements will not be fully implemented until 2027.The changes are revenue-neutral and not intended to put a dent in ICBC’s forecasted $1.3 billion deficit — a situation Eby has called a “financial dumpster fire.”However, Eby said he hopes the measures will reduce costs to ICBC with a financial incentive to drive safely and prevent crashes, which are at a record high.One key change is that B.C. would move to a driver-based model from a vehicle-based insurance, so at-fault crashes are tied to the driver and not the car owner.Premiums would be calculated based on years of experience, number of at-fault crashes, place of residence and how the vehicle is used, with additional discounts or add-ons on top.Customers would have to list all the drivers who may operate the vehicle, and the experience and crash history of each driver would be taken into account in the premium.Those with a vehicle being used by a driver with a learner’s permit would have to pay as much as $200 more annually. But crashes caused by the learner before they get their licence won’t be counted in their driving history.ICBC would still offer discounts to inexperienced drivers, but those discounts would be reduced to better reflect the “risk” that those drivers represent, the province said.Under the plan, a driver would be considered inexperienced if they have fewer than 15 years of experience on the road.The corporation would consider at-fault crashes that happened over the past 10 years — up from three — to help determine a driver’s premium.But when the changes come into effect in September 2019, ICBC will only look back at two and a half years of at-fault crashes to determine premiums. Each year after that, it will extend the period by one year until 2027, when the full 10-year period will be in place.The corporation would forgive one at-fault crash for customers with 20 years of driving experience.The proposed model means drivers with more years of experience and no at-fault crashes would see greater discounts.Drivers are already paying more if they live in dense, urban areas, which are more risky for crashes. But the province is updating the map to better reflect what B.C. looks like in 2018, the province said.The utilities commission is set to hold a hearing in December to determine whether auto insurance rates will go up overall in the province.Andrew Wilkinson, leader of the Opposition Liberals, accused the NDP government of doing little to fix the problems at ICBC.“All the Attorney General has done today is lay blame at the foot of B.C. drivers, instead of overhauling the broken system that is ICBC,” said Wilkinson in a news release.The NDP countered with a news release saying the Liberals raided $1.2 billion from ICBC while they were in power in order to pad their own annual budgets.— Follow @ellekane on Twitter.
TORONTO — The Toronto stock market racked up a solid gain Wednesday amid rising hopes for a strong reading on U.S. job creation as traders also caught up with two positive manufacturing reports that were released while the TSX was closed for Canada Day.Here are the closing numbersTSX — 15,209.79+63.78 0.42%S&P 500 — 1,974.62+1.30 0.07%Dow — 16,976.24+20.17 0.12%Nasdaq — 4,457.73 -0.92 -0.02%Canadian stocks rose a fifth day as the benchmark index rose to an intraday record.The S&P/TSX composite index gained 63.78 points to 15,209.79 after data showed that Chinese manufacturing grew in June for the first time in six months. The gauge closed at record on June 30 and Wednesday surpassed its intraday high of 15,154.77 set on June 6, 2008.In the U.S., the manufacturing sector showed a 13th straight month of growth.The Canadian dollar was up 0.03 of a cent to 93.75 cents US.U.S. indexes put in lacklustre performances but the Dow Jones industrials and the S&P 500 again closed at fresh record highs. The Dow was up 20.17 points to 16,976.24 and the S&P 500 gained 1.3 points to 1,974.62. The Nasdaq was 0.92 of a point lower at 4,457.73.Traders were cautious ahead of the other major economic event for the week — the release Thursday of the U.S. government’s employment report for June.Ahead of that data, U.S. payrolls firm ADP reported that the private sector created 281,000 jobs in June, much higher than the 205,000 reading that had been forecast. That raised hopes the government figures would show the American economy cranked out more than the 210,000 jobs in the public and private sector that economists have forecast.“Clearly, now the market is going to set up for a bullish number,” said Wes Mills, chief investment officer at Scotia Private Client Group.“It does seem risk-on is coming back. People have been reluctant to fully endorse this rally and we know the fears that have popped up, whether it’s Ukraine or China or more recently this Iraq business. But it does seem the market is shaking all of these things off.”In corporate news, JPMorgan Chase chairman and chief executive Jamie Dimon said he has curable throat cancer. Dimon said he plans to remain on the job and be actively involved in key decisions while undergoing treatment. Despite the reassurance, Dimon’s illness could raise leadership concerns at one of the world’s biggest banks. The bank’s shares declined 60 cents to US$56.97.In Canada, shares in Canadian Pacific Railway Limited (TSX:CP) (NYSE:CP) were 10 cents higher to C$193.41 after the carrier was upgraded by equities research analysts at CIBC from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating. Earlier this week, analysts at Barclays raised their price target on shares of Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. from US$168 to US$196. The shares rose $1.19 to US$181.39 in New York.TSX advancers were led by the base metals component, up 3.85% as July copper gained six cents to US$3.27 a pound. The information technology sector was up 1.21% as BlackBerry (TSX:BB) ran up 45 cents or 4.11% to $11.39. The stock has surged lately, up about 40% in the past month amid strong quarterly financial results and enthusiasm over its new product. BlackBerry’s Passport, which meets somewhere between a smartphone and a tablet in size, is scheduled to launch in Europe this September.The gold sector shook off early declines to move up 0.2% while August bullion rose $4 to US$1,330.60 an ounce.The energy sector was ahead 0.3% with August crude on the New York Mercantile Exchange down 86 cents to a three-week low of US$105.08 a barrel. Prices had drifted higher to almost US$107 in June amid a growing insurgency in Iraq, but have since fallen the fighting has stayed well away from the south where most of Iraq’s oil production is located.With files from BloombergTOP STORIESCanadian dollar moves above 94 cents to 2014 high, but rally seen as short livedFed boss says rate moves not the way to address ‘pockets of increased risk-taking’ in financial systemFacebook investigated after manipulating users’ emotions in news feed study without consentMove over, oil sands: Shale powers rebound in deals for Canada’s energy sectorWHAT’S ON DECK THURSDAYCANADA8:30 a.m.Merchandise Trade Balance (May): Economists expect a deficit of $300,000 UNITED STATES8:30 a.m.Employment Report: Economists expect a gain of 215,000 jobs and the jobless rate to hold at 6.3% Weekly jobless claims: Economists expect 313,000 new claims, up from last week Goods and Services Trade Balance (May): Economists expect a deficit of $45-billion Non-manufacturing ISM Index (June): Economists expect a reading of 56.3