The Toronto stock market was little changed Monday morning, surrendering most early gains as profit-taking hit Research In Motion’s (TSX:RIM) share price while mining and energy stocks failed to benefit from higher commodity prices.The S&P/TSX composite index added 7.16 points to 12,823.79, while the TSX Venture Exchange was off 5.31 points at 1,221.93.The Canadian dollar sold off for a fourth session, down 0.3 of a cent to a six-month low of 99.05 cents US.The dollar has tumbled about 1 1/2 cents US since the Bank of Canada indicated Wednesday that it will be slower to raise interest rates than had been expected because of economic weakness.The dollar has been supported in recent months partly on sentiment that the central bank might hike rates later this year. Data released Friday showing low inflation in Canada at the end of 2012 further suggested that investors will have to wait longer for the central bank to move. Higher rates tend to attract investors and push up the currency.U.S. indexes lost early momentum as a disappointing housing sector report competed with a well received earnings report from heavy equipment maker Caterpillar Inc. and data showing higher than expected durable goods orders in December.The Dow Jones industrials declined 14.23 points to 13,881.75 as the National Association of Realtors said its seasonally adjusted index for pending home sales dropped 4.3 per cent to 101.7 in December. That’s still 6.9 per cent higher than it was a year ago. Sales were held back by a limited supply of available homes.The Nasdaq gained 4.37 points to 3,154.08 and the S&P 500 index was down 3.05 points to 1,499.91.Durable goods orders rose by a greater than expected 4.6 per cent in December. That was more than double the consensus forecast for a two per cent gain. The transportation sector was largely responsible for the increase, with orders in that segment up 12 per cent.Caterpillar’s fourth-quarter profit fell 55 per cent to US$697 million, or $1.04 a share. The latest quarter included a previously disclosed goodwill impairment charge of 87 cents a share.Revenue dropped seven per cent to US$16.08 billion, beating estimates of $16 billion. Ex-items earnings were $1.91 per share versus expectations of $1.69 and its shares were up 1.35 per cent to US$96.87 in New York.A stronger than expected string of U.S. fourth-quarter earnings reports has helped push markets higher in January, with the TSX gaining 0.7 per cent last week while the Dow industrials ran ahead 1.8 per cent.“The markets are probably a little ahead of themselves, capturing the relief that we didn’t have great protracted political battles in the U.S.,” said Chris King, portfolio manager at Morgan, Meighen and Associates, referring to the so-called fiscal cliff and raising the debt ceiling.“All the while, we know that the U.S. economy is improving, China is turning around. And what is most encouraging, we’re seeing fund flows back into equities like we haven’t seen going back more than a decade.”The Canadian corporate earning season kicks into gear this week with some of Canada’s biggest companies reporting.Canadian Pacific Railway (TSX:CP) and grocer Metro Inc. (TSX:MRU.A) report earnings results on Tuesday while Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (TSX:POT) and Canadian Oil Sands (TSX:COS) hand in numbers on Thursday.Elsewhere on the corporate front, Research In Motion Ltd. (TSX:RIM) unveils its new BlackBerry 10 product line in New York on Wednesday. Its stock has been on a tear lately amid optimism about the new lineup, rising 50 per cent in January and 12 per cent last week alone. However, its stock fell 77 cents, or 4.37 per cent, to $16.84 Monday morning on profit-taking.The gold sector was down 0.85 per cent as February bullion stepped back 50 cents to US$1,656.10 an ounce. Barrick Gold Corp. (TSX:ABX) shed 24 cents to $32.78 while Kinross Gold Corp. (TSX:K) faded 28 cents to C$8.30.The mining sector also helped depress the TSX, down 0.5 per cent as March copper on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose one cent to US$3.66 a pound. Thompson Creek Metals (TSX:TCM) shed six cents to C$4.13 and Capstone Mining (TSX:CS) declined six cents to $2.43.The energy sector was off 0.16 per cent even as oil prices advanced, with the March crude contract ahead five cents to US$95.93 a barrel. Imperial Oil (TSX:IMO) lost 13 cents to C$44.95.The telecom sector gained 0.6 per cent with BCE Inc. (TSX:BCE) ahead 34 cents to $44.70.Financials also supported the TSX as Royal Bank (TSX:RY) rose 46 cents to $62.56 while Bank of Montreal (TSX:BMO) gained 40 cents to $64.55.Economic news will also hopefully provide some direction for traders.In the U.S., the Federal Reserve wraps up its two-day meeting on interest rates Wednesday. No one expects the central bank to move on rates but traders will look for clues as to when the Fed might end its latest round of economic stimulus.Minutes from the previous Fed meeting, released Jan. 3, showed a split among members over how long to continue the stimulus, known as quantitative easing. It involves the Fed buying bonds to support the U.S. economy, a move aimed at keeping interest rates low.Some thought the program should be slowed or stopped before the end of 2013 amid concerns that the bond purchases would destabilize the economy.The key piece of data for the week comes out Friday. Economists generally expect the U.S. non-farm payrolls report to show that the economy created 153,000 jobs in January, slightly below December’s 155,000 reading.Traders will also take in the latest readings on economic growth in Canada and the U.S. during the week.European bourses were higher as London’s FTSE 100 index added 0.22 per cent, Frankfurt’s DAX lost 0.24 per cent and the Paris CAC was up 0.07 per cent.

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first_imgAngel MooreAPTN NewsIn a first of its kind in the Maritime region of eastern Canada, employees with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) met with members of the Mi’kmaq community to build a better relationship.Elder Noel Milliea says the ultimate goal is to change perceptions.Milliea is from Elsipogtog. He was asked by the DFO to speak at this meeting. The Elder teaches health and healing in his community.“So when we try to look at the parallels that both of us have, we come to understand a little bit about why we are the way we are on both sides,” said Millieau.“Why is there so much racism and why is there so much systemic trauma.”The DFO and the Mi’kmaq dispute over fisheries has a long history.The Supreme Court of Canada ruled in 1999, that the Mi’kmaq had a right to commercially fish and support a moderate livelihood.The decision, known as the Marshall decision, is based on treaty rights signed in 1760 and 1761.It was a win for the Mi’kmaq, economically and culturally.But the decision did not solve the disagreements of how much fish the Mi’kmaq had a right to catch because the two sides haven’t been able to agree upon the definition of moderate livelihood.This has led to disputes and anger on both sides.At the three days of meetings, history was discussed – as a shared history between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples.Trevor Sanipass says it’s the responsibility of everyone to educate themselves and others.“You know treaties were signed by two parties, so the treaties are not just the Aboriginal treaty it’s by all its their ancestors and our ancestors signed these agreements,” said Sanipass.The DFO said it wants its staff to become aware, and have a better understanding of Indigenous history.Debbie Boutt-Matheson said this will help with everyday interactions and perceptions.”You don’t always necessarily always think about it that way so that for me was a really great sort of dawning moment of I haven’t thought about it like that before and I have to think about it like that,” said Matheson.According to Millieau, relationships are already improving with the DFO reaching out to the community.”Hopefully it will make a difference in building relationships meaningful relationships with them in how they engage in our first nations communities,” Milliea said.Sanipass gives the government credit for taking the step to learn from community members.”What better way of doing it is really having first nations people, elders, educators, leaders and share this information, not just from our own people but to others as well,” said Sanipass.The DFO said it plans to offer more staff learning opportunities to develop positive relationships with Indigenous communities.amoore@aptn.ca@angelharksenlast_img

17 March 2009Concern over malnutrition among long-term refugees from Western Sahara have sparked two assessment missions to their camps in western Algeria by humanitarian partners, the first of which embarks tomorrow, the United Nations refugee agency announced today. Staff of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the World Food Programme (WFP) will accompany representatives of donor countries and their partners from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) on a three-day mission to the camps of Sahrawi people, starting tomorrow.“The aim is to see first-hand the situation in the sites and to assess the overall conditions of the refugees,” UNHCR spokesperson Ron Redmond said in Geneva, noting that in the last survey conducted in 2008, 61 per cent of the children and 66 per cent of pregnant women in the camps were suffering from anaemia.Later this month, nutritionists from UNHCR and WFP will visit the camps to assess the current nutritional status of the most vulnerable refugees and to evaluate the current programmes and practices. The mission will also decide on whether to include additional foodstuffs with high nutritional value in the food assistance, specifically targeted to children, and pregnant and lactating women.As a result of the last survey conducted in 2008 by Médecins du Monde (MDM) and WFP in coordination with UNHCR, the UN refugee agency already provides supplementary food in addition to the 125,000 general food rations distributed by WFP, it said. WFP has also added supplementary and school feeding programmes to its operation, distributing fortified, blended foods to malnourished children, pregnant women and lactating mothers and is working to diversify its basic food basket.In the last five years, however, donor funding has been erratic and in 2008, UNHCR only received 39 per cent of its budget, and both it and WFP still need additional funding for 2009.Sahrawi refugees started arriving in Algeria in the mid-seventies. UNHCR has been providing assistance to this group since the influx into the Tindouf area in 1975-76 while WFP has been providing food assistance since 1986.Tomorrow’s mission will include ambassadors and diplomats from more than 19 countries, including Brazil, France, Indonesia, Italy, Switzerland, South Africa, Spain, Nigeria and the United States, as well as representatives of the European Commission Humanitarian Aid Office (ECHO).Participants will visit two of four refugee camps and will meet with beneficiaries, refugee leaders and Algerian authorities, according to UNHCR. The refugees have been living in four desolate camps in south-west Algeria since the mid-seventies, when a dispute arose between Morocco and the Frente Polisario over the status of Western Sahara.Since 1991, the UN mission in Western Sahara (MINURSO) has been tasked with monitoring the ceasefire between the two parties and organizing a long-stalled referendum on self-determination.

Buffett’s Berkshire adds GM stake, ups positions in Wal-Mart, IBM; Kraft, P&G stakes trimmed OMAHA, Neb. – Warren Buffett’s company is apparently bullish on the U.S. auto industry.His company, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. took a new stake of 10 million in shares in General Motors Co. in the first quarter. The investment comes as the Detroit automaker continues to rebound from bankruptcy three years ago. It posted a first-quarter net income of $1 billion, fueled by U.S. vehicle sales.Buffett drives a GM-made Cadillac DTS sedan, so the investment could a further sign of his preference among U.S. automakers. Berkshire is not invested in Ford Motor Co. or Chrysler, which is majority owned by Fiat SpA. But the purchase of the GM stake, worth about $214 million as of Tuesday, could also have been made by one of Berkshire’s other investment managers.Omaha-based Berkshire also revealed in a regulatory filing Tuesday that it boosted its stake in Wal-Mart by almost 8 million shares to 46.7 million shares.The first-quarter move to expand Berkshire’s stake in Wal-Mart came before The New York Times published a report detailing allegations that Wal-Mart executives used bribes to speed the retailer’s expansion in Mexico.Buffett told Berkshire shareholders earlier this month, however, that the scandal didn’t change his view on Wal-Mart’s value or its earning power.Berkshire officials don’t typically comment on the quarterly investment reports, and they did not respond to a message on Tuesday about the latest update.The documents Berkshire filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission also don’t reveal everything Buffett and the company’s two new investment managers were buying and selling in the first quarter. That’s because regulators allow them to omit some of the company’s holdings from the report.Berkshire tweaked a number of positions in its $75.3 billion portfolio during the first three months of 2012. It also added a stake of 1.6 million Viacom shares, which was the only new holding reported besides GM.It also boosted its investments in DirecTV, Liberty Media, DaVita Inc. and the Bank of New York Mellon.Berkshire reduced its holdings in Intel Corp., Kraft Foods, Dollar General, Procter & Gamble and Verisk Analytics.The IBM stake that Berkshire first reported last fall grew to 64.4 million shares by the end of March from 63.9 million in December.Initially, the IBM investment surprised many because Buffett had long refused to invest in technology companies because it’s too hard to predict which one will prosper in the long run. But Buffett said in November that IBM had become more of a service company with long-lasting customers who are reluctant to change.Buffett makes most of the investment decisions at Berkshire, but Tuesday’s filing didn’t differentiate between choices he made and ones made by the company’s other investment managers, Todd Combs and Ted Weschler.Buffett has said he doesn’t typically make investments worth less than $300 million, so many of the moves reported Tuesday are likely the work of Combs or Weschler.Buffett has praised both Combs and Weschler and said the two men are managing $2.75 billion each, while Buffett oversees the remaining roughly $150 billion.Combs started at Berkshire last year, so he is further along in building his portfolio. Weschler started early this year.Berkshire’s investments are closely watched in the market because of Buffett’s successful record.Berkshire occasionally receives permission from the SEC to delay disclosing some stock purchases to prevent others who follow Buffett’s moves from driving up the price of those stocks before Berkshire completes its purchases. Berkshire then discloses the purchases or sales in a subsequent quarter and issues amended reports for previous quarters.The SEC says it grants such confidentiality to investment managers only when they can show they would be harmed substantially by immediate disclosure.Besides investments, Berkshire owns roughly 80 subsidiaries, including clothing, furniture and jewelry firms, but its insurance and utility businesses typically account for more than half of the company’s net income. Other major investments include Coca-Cola Co. by News Staff Posted May 15, 2012 9:58 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email

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