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Good news report from Canada

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26 April 2008

3 April was the 3rd day of the tenth month of the 2nd year of Canadian national consciousness rising to invincibility, as indicated by the following press reports:

3 April 2008

The Globe and Mail - Home prices still rising across the country (3 April 2008) Home prices continued to rise in Canada in the first quarter of 2008 in every major market but one, according to a report by Royal LePage Real Estate Services. Detached bungalow prices showed the largest gain across Canada in the first three months of the year, rising by 8.3 per cent from the previous year. Two-storey homes rose by 7.1 per cent, and standard condo units 6.9 per cent.

'Canada's housing market remains on solid footing,' said Phil Soper, president of Royal LePage. 'These conditions are far more agreeable to those searching for a home, and are more sustainable in the long term than the sharp price increases recently experienced.' The largest year-over-year price increases in the first three months of 2008 were in Saskatoon and Regina for all three housing types. In Toronto, bungalows appreciated the most year-over-year, with an 11.3 per cent increase, while two-storey homes rose by 8 per cent and condos 6.9 per cent. In Vancouver, the price of a bungalow was up 12.5 per cent from last year. Two-storey homes were up 13.3 per cent and standard condos 12.9 per cent.

From a Canadian Press report on this: The drop in the cost of money and the anticipated further fall in the cost of money and mortgages in Canada are having a positive impact on the Canadian housing market, said Phil Soper. Smaller cities, like Halifax, St John, Saint John's, Regina, and Saskatoon, are experiencing the greatest price appreciation right now, Soper said.

From a Reuters Canada report on this: Home-price increases moderated in the first quarter, but remained solid due to a strong economy, high immigration levels, and relatively low interest rates, according to Royal LePage.

The Canadian Economic Press on relatively upbeat economic forecast (3 April 2008) Saskatchewan and Manitoba will ride a wave of demand for resources and agricultural products and beat the national average for GDP growth, a Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) report says. Saskatchewan will lead the country in terms of economic growth, RBC says, with a 3.6% economic expansion in 2008. 'We track a dozen indicators in each province and Saskatchewan was first in eight of those twelve indicators,' said Craig Wright, chief economist of RBC. Not only are exports from the province seeing 'phenomenal gains', the domestic side of the economy is also beginning to show strength, said Wright. Meanwhile, Manitoba will benefit from a diversified manufacturing base, big capital spending projects, and a growing housing market. Business spending in Canada continues to be strong despite the economic slowdown, a fact Wright attributed to the ongoing growth in global demand for commodities.

From a Globe and Mail report on this: On the Prairies, the boom is on. 'Saskatchewan and Manitoba have become the new ''it'' provinces,' Mr Wright declared. Economic success, which has been percolating in the past year, has sparked a new sense of optimism on the Prairies. People are making more money and spending more as well: Personal disposable income and retail sales are forecast to rise between 8 and 9 per cent in both Saskatchewan and Manitoba this year, the best in Canada, Royal Bank predicted. And the provinces' unemployment rates are expected to be among the lowest in Canada.

From a CBC News report on this: Every province will experience an economic slowdown this year, except Nova Scotia—where growth is expected to edge up by a 10th of a percentage point to 2.5 per cent.

From a CanWest News Service report on this: No recession in Canada or in any of the provinces. That's the relatively upbeat forecast by RBC. Canada's economy will grow 1.6% in 2008, recovering to 2.3% next year, RBC predicted. 'RBC expects the drag from the trade sector in 2008 to be offset by Canada's strong terms of trade, continuing job growth and rising wages,' it said. 'These factors are expected to help buoy consumer spending through the year.'

The Canadian Press - Ottawa program to rid roads of older vehicles (2 April 2008) Environment Canada's annual planning report earmarks C$90 million over the next three years for a so-called vehicle 'scrappage' program. Seven groups across the country get money from Ottawa to offer incentives—ranging from rebates on new vehicles to free transit passes and charitable receipts—in exchange for older vehicles. The government estimates 5 million vehicles from 1995 or earlier—predating today's tougher emissions standards—were on the roads last year. These older vehicles make up just a fraction of the estimated 18 million vehicles in Canada, but they account for up to two-thirds of the pollution that causes smog.

The Vancouver Sun on new B.C. tobacco regulations in effect now (4 April 2008) Since Monday, retailers open to children or minors in British Columbia have been prohibited by new provincial legislation from displaying tobacco products, or from advertising or promoting the use of tobacco with a sign or any other means.

The Canadian Press on smoking, bullying down among youth (3 April 2008) Fewer young people are hooked on tobacco, taking part in bullying, or spending as much time in couch-potato behaviour compared with a few years ago, says a new report on the physical and emotional health of Canadian youth. Principal author Dr William Boyce, director of the Social Program Evaluation Group at Queen's University, said there's been a 'good drop' in the percentage of daily smokers among the 9,500 students in Grades 6 to 10 across Canada who participated in the 2006 study on which the report is based, since the previous report in 2002. Another reason for some optimism is that bullying has declined slightly as well, he said.

Dr Boyce said the researchers found that having good family relationships appears to have a significant influence on whether young people engage in healthy or risky behaviours. 'So the sort of warm and fuzzy good things about families are actually important to good health for youth,' he said. A supportive school environment in which kids feel good about themselves also affects behaviour, added Dr Boyce.

From a Saskatoon StarPhoenix report on this: Only four per cent of boys were shown to smoke daily, compared to 15 per cent in 2002. Girls were at six per cent, down from 11 per cent in 2002. 'Our teens are remarkably healthy, and they are doing well, and getting better,' said Dr Elizabeth Saewyc, associate professor of the school of nursing at the University of British Columbia. 'Part of what's happening is a nationwide social change where it's no longer to be cool or acceptable to smoke,' said Dr Saewyc, who is also a researcher for the Canadian Institute of Health Research.

The National Post - Homework policy sent for approval (3 April 2008) A Toronto public school policy to reduce homework crossed a hurdle. A school board committee agreed to send a draft of the policy on to an upcoming board meeting for debate and approval. 'Time spent on homework should be balanced with the importance of personal and family wellness and the wide array of family obligations experienced in our society today,' it states. The policy encourages parents not to keep children up past their bedtime, even if the homework is not complete. Frank Bruni, a parent who spearheaded the reform, said the 'progressive' policy will give students more time to play outside, and thus help combat childhood obesity. It also teaches students that it is OK to ' ''turn off'' and take time for themselves,' said trustee Josh Matlow. 'At the end of the day, I think that most families would like to have time to have dinner with each other and catch up on the day,' Mr Matlow said.

The Vancouver Province - So many cultures living in harmony (3 April 2008) Della Li knows better than just about anyone why the number of visible minorities continues to climb in British Columbia. An immigrant from China herself, Li works with the Delta School Board as a settlement worker with new immigrant families. 'All kinds of cultures live in harmony together,' said Li.

These are a few of the news reports reflecting Canada's rising invincibility from the growing Yogic Flying groups across Canada and the Invincible America Assembly at Maharishi University of Management and Maharishi Vedic City, USA.

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