Canadian Social Research Links

Banks and Business

Sites de recherche sociale au Canada

Les banques et le monde des affaires

Updated January 8, 2017
Page révisée le 8 janvier 2017

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Wealth and Income Inequality Links


Corporate Responsibility Resources in Canada and elsewhere

- 75+ links organized under the following categories:
* Company Information Search Sites * General Corporate Activity Tracking Sites * Business Ethics and Ethical Investment Sites * Boycott Sites * Canadian Government Consumer Help Websites * Complain about Canadian Corporations violating OECD Guidelines * Complain About Your Bank, Trust, Insurance or Investment Company * Complain About Misleading Phone Calls from Businesses * Canadian Courts, Tribunals and Commissions and Rulings * Laws from Countries Around the World * Canadian Corporate Lobbyists Search Sites * Donations to Canadian and U.S. Political Parties and Candidates * Chemicals Released in Your Community in Canada * Media Accountability * Find Low-Cost Gasoline Across Canada

Democracy Watch


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Chew on this: Report says top CEOs to earn more by lunch than average worker in 2017
By David Paddon
January 3, 2017
Canada’s highest-paid CEOs are projected to earn more before lunchtime Tuesday than the average working person’s income for all of 2017, says a report released by a think tank that tracks executive compensation. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives estimates this year’s elite group of chief executive officers will earn the average, full-time Canadian wage by 11:47 a.m. on the first working day for many Canadians. Last year, it would have taken until 12:18 p.m., the report said.


New release from the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

Throwing Money at the Problem:
10 Years of Executive Compensation

By Hugh Mackenzie
January 3, 2017

The CCPA has been tracking CEO pay in Canada for 10 years, and in that time we've found that little has changed. Despite public outrage over exorbitantly high compensation packages, CEO pay has continued unabated, weathering all kinds of economic storms, and soaring to new highs - See more at:

Download complete report (PDF - 938KB, 28 pages):

From Statistics Canada:

December 16, 2016
Canadian Megatrends: The fall and rise of Canada's top income earners
Canada's top 1% of income earners have seen their share of the total income pie shrink and grow several times over the last century. This month's issue of Canadian Megatrends takes a 10-decade look at the highest earners in society.
The article not only looks at the market income share of the highest earners, but also examines their income sources and the differences between the income of high earners and that of median earners by census metropolitan area.

Complete article - 3 pages
by Brian Murphy of StatCan

CIBC says Canadian job quality in freefall, hitting a 25-year low under the Conservatives
March 5, 2015
One of Canada's major banks says the quality of Canadian jobs is taking a nosedive. And even though Stephen Harper likes to pat his own back and praise his own jobs record, CIBC tells us the quality of Canadian jobs has been steadily trending downwards throughout Harper's time as prime minister.

Released Thursday, the new report from CIBC (see link below) shows part-time jobs and self-employment rising sharply at the expense of full-time, high-paying jobs.

The bank's Canadian Employment Quality Index challenges the Conservatives glowing reviews of their own economic management -- here's the bleak news in four startling charts:

1. Employment quality spiralling
2. Part-time work skyrocketing
3. Self-employment soars above employed positions
4. More low-paying jobs than high-paying jobs



The CIBC report:

Employment Quality—Trending Down (PDF - 136K, 3 pages)
By Benjamin Tal
March 5, 2015

CIBC World Markets Inc. • Economics

Glory Days : CEO Pay in Canada Soaring to Pre-Recession Highs
(PDF - 775KB, 20 pages)
By Hugh Mackenzie
January 2, 2015
This report looks at 2013 compensation levels for Canada’s highest paid 100 CEOs and finds that executive pay in Canada has rebounded to its pre-recession glory days. The review finds that the CEOs pocketed an average $9.2 million—compared to the average Canadian income of $47,358. The last time CEO pay was this high was in 2007, when the average for the highest paid 100 CEOs was $10 million.

The report also assesses the poor record of voluntary restraint and shareholder activism in reining in CEO compensation. It concludes that it is time to consider simple tax measures that provide a much more effective approach to closing the income gap in Canada.

Infographic: Gross Income
By 11:41 a.m. today, just as most Canadians are getting ready for their lunch break on the first official work day of the year, the average of the 100 highest paid CEOs will have already pocketed what it takes the average Canadian an entire year, working full-time to earn.

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Low-income Canadians hit by banking frills
Banks like to champion financial literacy in November. But their expensive products sold with high-pressure pitches can be a problem, not a solution.
By Ellen Roseman
November 3, 2014
John Stapleton works as a volunteer to educate low-income people about their finances. I did a presentation with him at the Toronto Reference Library, showcasing his work about retirement planning on a low income. He sent me a link to his new report (the next link below) based on the lessons learned giving a financial literacy course to marginalized people on behalf of Houselink Community Homes in Toronto.

Toronto Star


Welcome to the Financial Mainstream?
The Hazards Facing Low Income People When Navigating the Financial World
(PDF - 7.2MB, 36 pages)
By John Stapleton for Houselink (with Max Wallace)
November 2014
In the winter of 2013/2014, Houselink Community Homes, an agency serving marginalized people with mental health issues, responded to a need they had observed over decades. They offered an eight-week financial literacy course for their members and staff.
The report has two purposes. The first is to document some of the lessons learned from conducting a financial literacy course on behalf of Houselink Community Homes over the winter of 2013/14. (...) The second purpose is to shine some light on issues we are often unaware of when we design financial literacy courses. Not all of these issues can be resolved by teaching yet more financial literacy.

Houselink Community Homes


Related links:

Retiring on a low income Toolkit (PDF - 1.1MB, 19 pages)
By John Stapleton

WoodGreen Presentation:
Retiring on a Low Income:
Why it is Different….
By John Stapleton
June 11, 2014

Open Policy (John Stapleton's website/blog)


Financial Literacy Month
November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada, and the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada is proud to play a role in raising awareness and mobilizing organizations across Canada to take part. Financial literacy means having the knowledge, skills and confidence to make responsible financial decisions.

Financial Consumer Agency of Canada
The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) is an independent body working to protect and inform consumers of financial products and services. We were established in 2001 by the federal government to strengthen oversight of consumer issues and expand consumer education in the financial sector. In July 2010, FCAC was also tasked with the oversight of payment card network operators and their commercial practices.


- Go to the Ontario Municipal and Non-Governmental Sites (O-Z) page:

Who Earns What?
September 27, 2014

Selected content:

* Who earns what : Global CEO-to-worker pay ratios
* How many average workers’ salaries would it take to pay an average CEO salary?
* Who earns what, from cradle to grave
* Who earns what : Canada's highest-paid women
* Who earned more : Eugenie Bouchard or Milos Raonic?
* Who earns what : Canadian jobs from eh to zed
* Who earns what : a sample of coffeeshop starting wages
* more...

Did YOU know that in Vancouver, the title of "Asphalt Raker" is worth $53,508 per year?
(Presumably after several years of perfecting their asphalt-raking techniques...)

[ Disclaimer : To all asphalt rakers in Vancouver, I apologize. But really, eh.]


Beware, fellow plutocrats, the pitchforks are coming (video, duration 20 minutes)
By Nick Hanauer
Filmed August 2014
Fellow plutocrats, I think it may be time for us to recommit to our country, to commit to a new kind of capitalism which is both more inclusive and more effective, a capitalism that will ensure that America's economy remains the most dynamic and prosperous in the world. Let's secure the future for ourselves, our children and their children. Or alternatively, we could do nothing, hide in our gated communities and private schools, enjoy our planes and yachts — they're fun — and wait for the pitchforks.

Interactive transcript of the above video:
Nick Hanauer is a rich guy, an unrepentant capitalist — and he has something to say to his fellow plutocrats: Wake up! Growing inequality is about to push our societies into conditions resembling pre-revolutionary France. Hear his argument about why a dramatic increase in minimum wage could grow the middle class, deliver economic prosperity ... and prevent a revolution.

TED Talks

In 1977, famed business theorist Peter Drucker wrote in the pages of the Wall Street Journal, that “the most radical but also the most necessary innovation would be a published corporate policy that fixes the maximum compensation of all corporate executives as a multiple of the lowest paid regular full-time employee.”

Wagemark is an international wage standard used by companies, non-profit organizations and government agencies to certify that the ratio between their highest and lowest earners is competitive and sustainable.

The mission of the Wagemark Foundation [ ] is to advance the Wagemark Standard as a leading international wage certification system and encourage greater wage responsibility and transparency within and across organizations.

The Wagemark Foundation is governed by an independent Board of Directors. It operates internationally and is based in Toronto, Canada.

Wagemark Certified organizations are committed to ensuring that the wage ratio between the highest earn and the average earnings of the lowest decile of earners within their organization does not exceed 8:1.

CEO pay

CEO earnings are a stark contrast to the average Canadian income
News Release
January 2, 2014
Five years after a global recession knocked the wind out of Canada’s labour market, throwing tens of thousands of workers onto the unemployment line and sidelining a generation of young workers, the compensation of Canada’s CEO elite continues to sail along.
By 1:11pm on January 2, the first official working day of the year, Canada’s highest paid CEOs have already pocketed $46,634 — what it takes most Canadians an entire year, working full-time, to earn.

CCPA's annual CEO pay review, by economist and CCPA Research Associate Hugh Mackenzie, takes a snapshot of the 240 publicly listed Canadian corporations on the TSX Index, ranks the highest paid 100 CEOs on that list, and determines their average total compensation.Read the full pay review:

All in a Day's Work? CEO Pay in Canada (PDF - 684K, 14 pages)
January 2014

Version française:
Une journée de travail bien remplie (PDF - 308Ko., 16 pages)
janvier 2014

You can also follow along and keep track of who's making what.
Visit our CEO Pay Clock:

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Corporate Welfare at Industry Canada since John Diefenbaker (PDF - 612K, 15 pages)
Fraser Institute Bulletin
July 2013
By Mark Milke
Four of the five previous reports [in this series] gave an overarching, bird’s-eye view of the cost of corporate welfare. This report catalogues which companies regularly received taxpayer dollars from Industry Canada (and its predecessor departments) between April 1, 1961, and March 31, 2012, and in what amounts.

Fraser Institute
News Release:

Industry Canada handed out $22.1B in business subsidies, aka "corporate welfare," since 1961

Fraser Institute


Related link:

Corporate welfare comes with pepperoni:
Pizzerias and ice cream parlours get business subsidies.
By Carol Goar
August 7, 2013
If you’re planning to open a pizzeria, you’ll be pleased to know that Industry Canada is eager to help. It has subsidized 43 of them under its regional development program, costing taxpayers $1.3 million.
“Corporate welfare is rampant is Canada,” says economist Mark Milke, who dug up these details. Normally, the senior fellow at the Fraser Institute focuses on bigger stuff: multi-billion-dollar grants to aerospace companies, massive bailouts to automotive manufacturers, sizeable loans to prominent corporations. But in his latest publication,Corporate Welfare at Industry Canada since John Diefenbaker, Milke covers the whole gamut of handouts to private business, from the 75 subsidies showered on Pratt and Whitney to the tiny dollop of government largesse that went to the Buffalo Island Mini Mart and Gas Bar in Dillon, Sask

Toronto Star

World's wealthy richer than ever
Wealth of 'high net worth individuals' reached a record $46.2 trillion US
June 19, 2013
The investable wealth of the world's richest people reached a record high of $46.2 trillion US in 2012, a report by RBC Wealth Management and the consulting firm Capgemini has found.
The annual World Wealth Report, released Tuesday, found that the wealth of so-called high net worth individuals, or HNWIs, grew by 10 per cent last year, and the number of individuals included in the high net worth category grew by a comparable amount, rising 9.2 per cent to 12 million people worldwide.

HNWIs are defined as people who have investable assets of $1 million or more, excluding "primary residence, collectibles, consumables, and consumer durables (which include things like furniture and appliances)." Ultra high net worth individuals have assets of $30 million or more.

CBC News


RBC Wealth Management and Capgemini:

The World Wealth Report 2013
The World Wealth Report from Capgemini and RBC Wealth Management is the industry-leading benchmark for tracking high net worth individuals (HNWIs), their wealth, and the global and economic conditions that drive change in the Wealth Management industry. New to this year’s 17th annual edition, we introduce one of the most in-depth primary research works available on global HNWI perspectives and behavior. Based on responses from over 4,400 High Net Worth Individuals across 21 countries, we explore HNWI confidence levels, asset allocation decisions, as well as their wealth management advice and service preferences.

World Wealth Report 2013


RBC Wealth Management
We serve the needs of high net worth, affluent and institutional clients worldwide through private banking, credit, investment management, asset mnagement, trusts and other solutions

With more than 125,000 people in 44 countries, Capgemini is one of the world's foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing services. The Group reported 2012 global revenues of EUR 10.3 billion.


Related link:

High-net-worth individual
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A high-net-worth individual (HNWI) is a person with a high net worth. In the western and primarily American private banking business, these individuals typically are defined as having investable finance (financial assets not including primary residence) in excess of US$1 million.

The World’s 200 Richest People
November 2012
- from Bloomberg:
[ ]

How Canada Performs, 2011 - February 2013
(Conference Board of Canada)

Canada failing to close the income inequality gap
February 4, 2013
Canada has been unable to reverse the rise in income inequality - and poverty rates - that occurred in the 1990s. Low rankings on these social equity measures mar an otherwise solid "B" grade in The Conference of Canada's Society report card, released today.
Canada places 7th in the How Canada Performs: Society analysis, based on international data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
* Canada gets an overall "B" grade and ranks 7th of 17 countries
* One in seven Canadian children live in poverty.
* The 2008-09 financial crisis and recession increased the share of people in low income; elderly and working-age Canadians were most affected.

Canada Newswire


From the
Conference Board of Canada:

How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada
How Canada Performs is a multi-year research program to help leaders identify relative strengths and weaknesses in Canada’s socio-economic performance.
The site has over 80 pages covering a wide number of indicators, including: · Employment · GDP Growth · Income Inequality · Patents per Population · Exports · Life Expectancy · University Completions and many more.
- includes an a
bstract of the report and a link to the complete report:
NOTE : The Conference Board of Canada "asks" visitors to register by creating a free e-Library account before downloading the report. If you really, really want to read this report, prepare to divulge the name of your organization and your job function along with your street address and telephone number and more. I value my privacy and I didn't give any of my personal and private information, so I couldn't download the report.

Each indicator contains data from 17 countries:
* Australia * Austria * Belgium* Canada * Denmark * Finland * France * Germany * Ireland * Italy * Japan * Netherlands * Norway * Sweden * Switzerland *
United Kingdom * United States

Details and Analysis:
Categories and indicators
- incl. links to ALL indicators under the following categories:
* Economy * Environment * Society * Health * Innovation * Education and Skills

Selected content from the
"Society" category:

Jobless Youth ---
Disabled income ---
Elderly poverty ---
Child poverty ---
Working-age poverty ---
Income inequality ---
Intergenerational income mobility ---
Social isolation ---
Gender income gap ---
To access the links for the following categories, click "Details and analysis" above.
Voter turnout
Confidence in parliament
Life satisfaction
Acceptance of diversity


Society : Key Messages and links
* Canada earns a “B” and ranks 7th out of 17 peer countries in the Society report card. Canada’s middle-of-the-pack ranking means it is not living up to its reputation or its potential.
* Canada’s social performance has remained a “B” over the last two decades.
* Canada’s “D” grade on the poverty rate for working-age people, and its “C” grades on child poverty, income inequality and gender equity are troubling for a wealthy country.
NOTE : When the U.N. Rapporteur on Food Security said pretty much the same thing recently about poverty and inequality in pretty much the same words in May 2012 [ ], senior federal ministers called him "a bit patronizing" and "ill-informed."
So is the Conference Board of Canada also "a bit patronizing" and "ill-informed"??

How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada
Conference Board of Canada
The Conference Board builds leadership capacity for a better Canada by creating and sharing insights on economic trends, public policy and organizational performance.


From the
Toronto Star:
[ ]

Conference Board findings on poverty, inequality should spur change: Editorial
The Conference Board has just given Canada poor grades on dealing with poverty and income inequity, in its report card on How Canada Performs.
We can do better.

February 6, 2013
Canada may bask in its five-star image as a nation where the roads are paved with silver, if not gold. But for many of us the reality is less rosy, the Conference Board of Canada finds in its latest report on How Canada Performs. In fact, our national performance is downright “troubling for a wealthy country” when it comes to some key social indicators including the rich/poor gap, and the number of working-age adults and children living in poverty.
So what, then, is Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government focused on as Parliament resumes? Well, that would be Senate reform and yet more tough-on-crime laws, two issues that play to the party’s grassroots even though most Canadians worry more about jobs and the economy.


From the
Ottawa Citizen:

Shared prosperity [dead link]
February 4, 2013
The wealthiest one per cent get a lot of attention these days, but the real cause for concern is a bigger group of people, down at the bottom of the income spectrum. Beyond Canada’s simple humanitarian duty to make sure all its citizens have access to the necessities of life, there are real social and economic consequences when skills and opportunities are out of reach for many.

So the latest “How Canada Performs” report from the Conference Board of Canada, which focuses on “Society,” should give policy-makers something to consider. It gives Canada a “D” grade on working-age poverty, and a “C” on child poverty and income inequality. Those grades reflect Canada’s performance relative to 16 of its “peer countries” in the developed world. Poverty among the elderly in Canada has actually risen more quickly than in the other age groups, but relative to our peer group, we’re doing well on that score...

Ottawa Citizen

Executive pay in Canada: Overcompensating?
For Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs, the rewards start clocking in very early into the New Year.
January 3, 2013
By 1:18pm on January 2, the first official working day of the year, Canada’s top 100 CEOs will have already pocketed $45,448. It takes the average Canadian an entire year of full-time work to earn that.

Our latest report, Overcompensating: Executive Pay in Canada, highlights some key numbers around executive pay in Canada and also includes a list of Canada's highest paid 100 CEOs.

Overcompensating: Executive Pay in Canada (PDF - 104K, 3 pages)

You can also visit our pay clock, The Clash for the Cash: CEO vs. Average Joe, to find out just how much the average worker and top CEO have earned so far.

The Clash for the Cash: CEO vs. Average Joe

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

New from the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

Canada’s secret bank bailout revealed
April 30, 2012
News Release
OTTAWA—A study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) estimates the previously secret extent of extraordinary support required by Canada’s banks during the financial crisis. According to the study, by CCPA Senior Economist David Macdonald, support for Canadian banks reached $114 billion at its peak—that’s $3,400 for every man, woman, and child in Canada.

The study:

The Big Banks’ Big Secret:
Estimating government support for
Canadian banks during the financial crisis
(PDF - 2.2MB, 46 pages)
By David Macdonald
Throughout the 2008-2010 financial crisis, Canadian banks were touted by the federal government and the banks themselves as being much more stable than other countries’ big banks. Canadians we assured that our banks needed no bailout. However, in reality, Canada’s banks received billions in cash and loan support during the 2008-2010 financial crisis—and the Canadian government has remained resolutely secretive about the details. This report examines the nature and extent of government support to Canada’s big banks, estimated on the basis of partial information provided by Canada’s public institutions, and an analysis of the banks’ own financial reports.

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives


From the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

CEOs vs the 99%: No contest when it comes to pay
News Release
January 3, 2012
TORONTO—The highest paid 100 CEOs on Canada’s TSX Index had reason to cheer the New Year: By noon January 3, they had already pocketed $44,366 – what it takes the average wage earner an entire year to make.
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ (CCPA) annual look at CEO compensation reveals Canada’s Elite 100 CEOs pocketed an average $8.38 million in 2010 – a 27% increase over the average $6.6 million they took in 2009.

The first link below this box is to the CCPA report.

[Click anywhere in the above screen for a 40-second video from CCPA : The Clash for the Cash ]


Canada's CEO Elite 100 : The 0.01% (PDF - 694K, 21 pages)
By Hugh Mackenzie
January 3, 2012
Excerpt from p. 14:

Ed Broadbent, the originator of Canada’s commitment to end child poverty in 1989, has argued higher taxes on excessive compensation could provide the financial resources to fund a targeted plan to reduce, and potentially eliminate, the depth of poverty among Canadian families with children. But even without taking the step of raising taxes for Canada’s well-compensated CEOs, there is one simple thing Canada could do to curb CEOs’ enthusiasm—and their take-home pay. We could end the public subsidy of excessive CEO pay packages by getting rid of the loophole that allows the proceeds from cashing in stock options to be taxed as if they were capital gains—at half the normal rate—rather than as ordinary income.

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.


Related links:

Richest CEOs earn 189 times average Canadian
Top 100 executives earned about $8.38M each in 2010
January 3, 2012
CBC News


Top Canadian CEOs got 27 per cent pay hike
January 2, 2012
By noon on Tuesday, Jan. 3, the highest-paid chief executives officers in Canada will have earned as much as the average Canadian makes in an entire year, according to a new report.
The top 100 Canadian CEOs were paid an average of $8.4 million in 2010, a 27 per cent increase over the previous year, the report published Tuesday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says. In comparison, the average Canadian earned $44,366 that year, or 1.1 per cent more than in 2009, the report called Canada’s CEO Elite 100 notes.
Toronto Star

More than $27 billion spent by Ontario governments on corporate welfare since 1991
News Release
December 8, 2011
TORONTO, ON—Ontario governments are addicted to dispensing corporate welfare.
Between 1991 and 2009, Ontario governments of all political stripes spent more than $27.7 billion on direct subsidies to corporations, says a new report released today by the Fraser Institute, Canada’s leading public policy think-tank. “Subsidies to businesses, whether bailouts, loans that may not be repaid, or straight grants are all forms of corporate welfare and do nothing to benefit Ontario families,” said Mark Milke, Fraser Institute senior fellow and author of Ontario’s Corporate Welfare Bill: $27.7 billion.

The report:

Ontario’s Corporate Welfare Bill: $27.7 billion (PDF - 324K, 10 pages)
December 2011
(...) In 2008/09 alone, the bill for corporate welfare [i.e., subsidies to business and industry] amounted to almost $2.7 billion. For anyone who paid income tax in 2008, the cost of corporate welfare was $424 per Ontarian. (...) Ontario’s corporate welfare expenditures could have been redirected to personal or corporate income tax reductions in equal dollar amounts in the current fiscal year, among other measures.

[ Comment : The Fraser Institute's solution to corporate welfare is to redirect Ontario’s corporate welfare expenditures (i.e., subsidies to business and industry) to personal or corporate income tax reductions, going so far as to suggest a corporate tax rate of 8% in 2011/12, a $2.9 billion revenue loss to the Province. "If this option were chosen, Ontario would have the lowest corporate income tax rate in the country." Surprise, surprise. So listen up, corporations --- we're going to terminate your subsidies to make it look like we're tough on everyone, but we'll decrease your corporate income tax rates to compensate. Suffer, Baby... - By Gilles]

The Fraser Institute
"A free and prosperous world through
choice, markets and responsibility"


But wait!!
How do you really feel about the Fraser Institute??

The Fraser Institute Produces Junk: Graham Steele
(Nova Scotia Finance Minister) [dead link]
By Alex Boutilier
September 13, 2011
After delivering an update on Nova Scotia's 2011-2012 budget forecast, Finance Minister Graham Steele was asked what he thinks about a new report from the Fraser Institute that ranked Premier Darrell Dexter first among sitting Canadian premiers in terms of fiscal restraint.
The Fraser Institute produces junk. It is not a serious institution, it is a political organization. And it is no accident that their focus is on the Ontario election (Premier Dalton McGuinty came second last). They're trying to make themselves relevant to the Ontario election. It is no accident that the three premiers they rank at the bottom (PEI's Robert Ghiz, McGuinty, and Quebec Premier Jean Charest) are three non-Conservative premiers who are up for re-election right now. So the next time the Fraser Institute issues something that has Nova Scotia at the bottom, remember that when they put us at the top, my answer is still: the Fraser Institute produces junk. It does not deserve any serious consideration.
[Speaking directly to the interviewer:]
Remember that the next time you ask me about something else the Fraser Institute produces, that even when I could say 'yes, this is validation of what we're saying.' It's ... it's crap.
Metro News Halifax


From the
National Post:

Corporate ‘welfare’ costs Ontario $3-billion a year: report
Dec 8, 2011
By Tristin Hopper
National Post

The Occupy Movement - October 2011
- this link takes you to a section of the Wealth and Income Inequality Links page of this site

Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) - Home Page
(formerly the Business Council on National Issues)
The Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE) is a not-for-profit, non-partisan organization composed of the CEOs of Canada's leading enterprises. We engage in an active program of public policy research, consultation and advocacy. The CCCE is a source of thoughtful, informed comment from a business point of view on issues of national importance to the economic and social fabric of Canada.

Canadian Business Network - Government Services for Entrepreneurs
- includes links to:
Starting a Business
Growth and Innovation
Grants and Finances
Regulations, Licences and Permits
Export, Import and Foreign Investment
Hiring and Managing Staff
Business Planning
Management and Operations
Market Research and Statistics
Marketing and Sales
Selling to Governments
Copyright and Intellectual Property
Environment and Business
Exiting your Business

Inequality is bad for business
By Armine Yalnizyan
September 15, 2011
In August Canadian Business magazine published my article on why inequality is bad for business.
[ ]

Last week the International Monetary Fund, not known for left-leaning views, released a series of articles entitled “Why Inequality Throws Us Off Balance”.
[ ]

One of the papers is by Andrew Berg and Jonathan Ostry entitled “Equality and Efficiency: Is there a trade-off or do the two go hand in hand?

A few months earlier they had written a provocative piece “Inequality and Unsustainable Growth” documenting how lower inequality is linked to more sustained periods of growth….and that higher inequality means more volatility.

Yesterday the Conference Board of Canada released its second report on income inequality, looking at trends in income inequality internationally, between and within nations. It follows an earlier report on trends in income inequality in Canada. These authoritative pieces of research are funded by 25 big businesses and one government.

Note : to avoid duplication of links as much as possible, all links to wealth and income inequality have been moved to the Inequality Links page of this website:

Rising CEO Pay: Could it fuel social unrest? (three-part video, see links below)
June 1, 2011
BNN (Business News Network) has taken on the thorny topic of soaring CEO pay in Canada. Two former CEOs joined CCPA Senior Economist Armine Yalnizyan for a discussion about CEO pay and came to agreement on three important points: Executive compensation has gotten out of line; workers at the bottom and middle of the income spectrum need a boost, and higher taxes on the richest Canadians is the easiest solution to this worsening inequality.
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.

Related BNN link:

What is fair compensation for CEOs
and how should that be determined?
(three-part video, see links below)
May 30, 2011
BNN speaks to Janet McFarland, reporter, Globe and Mail; Paul Gryglewicz, Managing Partner, Global Governance Advisors; Courtney Pratt, former CEO of Stelco.

Fair compensation : three-part video
* Compensation Study - (part one of the video) (Duration 9:26)
* Compensation Study - (part two of the video)
(Duration 8:14)
* Compensation Study - (part three of the video)
(Duration 5:15)
Business News Network

Related link:

Who earned what last year, and why?
By Janet McFarland
May. 29, 2011 (updated May. 31, 2011)
Canada’s biggest companies have made strides in linking CEO pay to performance, but the effort remains a work in progress in many boardrooms.
A new tool - Pay for performance: How Canada’s CEOs stack up - developed by Toronto-based executive pay consulting firm Global Governance Advisors shows that the link between pay and performance varies significantly, with some companies disclosing above-average CEO compensation and below-average performance in 2010.
Globe and Mail

Only in the good ole U.S. of A.??

[NOTE : this is not a joke website.]

"Why Free Inhalers? Because COAL CARES.
Coal Cares™ is a brand-new initiative from International Coal Group, one of America's proud family of coal companies, to reach out to American youngsters with asthma and to help them keep their heads high in the face of those who would treat them with less than full dignity. For kids who have no choice but to use an inhaler, Coal Cares™ lets them inhale with pride. Puff-Puff™ inhalers are available free to any family living within 200 miles of a coal plant [emphasis added], and each inhaler comes with a $10 coupon towards the cost of the asthma medication itself. "

[Don't miss KIDZ KOAL KORNER!]

Another excerpt from the site:

"What causes asthma?
There is actually no single cause of childhood asthma. In fact, many non-asthmatic children experience asthma-like symptoms while engaging in strenuous exercise, as we all do. More seriously, air-borne particulates from certain plants can cause severe vasal restriction in the airways of particularly susceptible children, leaving them gasping for air at the most inopportune moments. Even more worrisome, bee and wasp stings and snake bites can cause paroxysms and a drawn-out death in particularly allergic individuals. Symptoms from long-term coal particulate exposure, while a great deal more common than the above, are many times less dramatic than the symptoms brought on by extreme allergic reactions."

This is sick.
Only in America, you say?
In the not-too-distant future:
"Today the Harper Government™ passed a Supplementary Appropriations Bill to purchase 100,000 copies of the "How to live on $9 a day" CD for distribution to poor households living within a 200-mile radius of a Conservative government."

Canadians for Tax Fairness
Over the past few months, a group of progressive organizers have launched a new organization - Canadians for Tax Fairness - to promote a progressive tax system, based on ability to pay, to fund the public services and programs required to meet our social, economic and environmental needs. For more info on the organization, mission, founding board, etc., see
- home page includes links to : * Home * Petition * About Us * Campaigns * Get Involved * News * Resources * Donate * Contact Us

Our first campaign is to fight the proposed corporate tax cuts.
Please read and sign our petition:

Petition to Stop Corporate Tax Cuts!

Related links:

Having Their Cake and Eating It Too:
Business Profits, Taxes, and Investment in Canada: 1961 Through 2010
(PDF - 955K, 38 pages)
By Jim Stanford
April 13, 2011
This study examines historical data on business investment and cash flow from 1961 through 2010, and, using econometric techniques, finds no evidence in the historical data that lower taxes have directly stimulated more investment.
[ Related news release ]
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives


Canada’s corporate tax policy sustains child poverty
April 10, 2011
By Simon Rosenblum and Sid Frankel
During the federal election campaign, it is important to remember that Canada already has one of the lower corporate tax rates in the western world. Now the Conservatives want to lower it even further. Canada also has one of the highest rates of child poverty in the western world. Why can’t we be one of the lowest? It’s a question of priorities — fiscal priorities. Surely that is the nub of the question.
[ Comments (12) ]
Toronto Star

The World's Billionaires

2010 Best 50 Corporate Citizens in Canada
Our ninth-annual report on the state of responsible business in Canada.
Spoiler :
# 1 - Mountain Equipment
# 2 - Cooperators Group Insurance
# 3 - Vancouver City Savings
# 47 - Cascades Inc.
# 48 - Royal Bank of Canada
# 49 - Thomson Reuters Corporation
# 50 - Canadian Imperial Bank Of Commerce

Source: - for those hungry to make business responsible
" is a website that works together with other Corporate Knight Inc. media facets to promote understanding on the growing space where business ethics is not an oxymoron. The aim of Corporate Knights is to be the primary resource for citizens (both human and corporations) on the topic of responsible business. To submit to the industry jargon, Corporate Knights' specific areas of coverage include Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)."

TD takes poor into account : Direct Deposit Initiative
keeps social assistance cheques out of hands of pricey payday lenders
By Rita Trichur
January 5, 2010
Toronto-Dominion Bank is using an innovative pilot program that specifically targets low-income earners as new clients – a financial intervention of sorts to prevent those folks from cashing their social assistance cheques at costly payday lenders. Canada's second-largest bank has set up kiosks in some government offices in British Columbia to reach out to these vulnerable consumers and snag them as customers just as they receive their welfare cheques. In some cases, civil servants are now simply referring clients to the closest TD branch.
Toronto Star

Soft landing for Canada’s CEOs
News Release
January 4, 2010
TORONTO—Canadians may have been hit hard by a worldwide economic recession, but it appears Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs are enjoying a soft landing. A report on executive compensation by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), a progressive think tank, reveals Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs pocketed an average $7.3 million in 2008, the year recession broadsided the nation.

A Soft Landing:
Recession and Canada’s 100 Highest Paid CEOs
(PDF - 432K, 17 pages)
By Hugh Mackenzie
January 4, 2010
"...the total average compensation for Canada's 100 highest paid CEOs was $7,352,895 in 2008—a stark contrast from the total average Canadian income of $42,305. They pocketed what takes Canadians earning an average income an entire year to make by 1:01 pm January 4—the first working day of the year."

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Tab for business bailouts and subsidies between
1994 and 2007 exceeds $200 billion, or $15,000 per taxpayer

News Release
November 27, 2009
VANCOUVER, BC—Canadian governments provided businesses with more than $202 billion in bailouts, loans, and subsidies between 1994 and 2007, according to a new study released today by the Fraser Institute, one of Canada’s leading economic think tanks.

Corporate welfare breaks the $200 billion mark:
An update on 13 years of business subsidies in Canada
(PDF - 535K, 11 pages)
December 2009

Related link:

Corporate 'welfare' hit $200B in 13 years: Report
Bailouts, subsidies hurt taxpayers, says the Fraser Institute

By John Morrissy
November 28, 2009
Bailouts and subsidies to businesses by Canadian governments surpassed $200 billion between 1994 and 2007, adding up to $15,126 per taxpayer, according to a report Friday from the Fraser Institute.
Canwest News Service

From the Bank of Canada:

Inflation Calculator
The Inflation Calculator uses monthly consumer price index (CPI) data from 1914 to the present to show changes in the cost of a fixed "basket" of consumer purchases. These include food, shelter, furniture, clothing, transportation, and recreation.

Investment Calculator
The Investment Calculator shows the effects of inflation on investments and savings. This tool allows you to see what a current investment will be worth in the future based on different assumptions on the annual interest rate and the annual rate of inflation. You can also enter a dollar amount to see how much you would have to invest today to reach a specific target value in the future, based on different rates of interest and inflation.

Banner year for Canada's CEOs:
Record High Pay Increase
(PDF - 390K, 17 pages)
January 2009
By Hugh Mackenzie

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice. Founded in 1980, the CCPA is one of Canada’s leading progressive voices in public policy debates.

'Corporate welfare bums' cost Canadians $182-billion: report
[expired link]

By Eric Beauchesne
December 10, 2008
OTTAWA -- Canadians have handed out more than $182-billion -- or $13,639 per taxpayer -- in business subsidies, bailouts and loans over the past dozen years, a right-wing think tank says in an attack on what a former NDP leader coined as "corporate welfare bums." The report from the Fraser Institute, however, comes as an entire industry is holding out its had for billions more in financial aid from taxpayers as the economy slumps into recession.
The National Post

Complete report
from The Fraser Institute:

Corporate welfare: Now a $182 billion addiction
A fiscal update on business subsidies in Canada
(PDF - 104K, 8 pages)
December 2008
When the Fraser Institute published the first study on corporate welfare one year ago, the tally between April 1, 1994 and March 30, 2004 amounted to $144 billion. That was the amount Canadian governments distributed to businesses in the form of subsidies from federal, provincial, and municipal treasuries (i.e., taxpayers) over the 10-year period. One year later, and with two more years of data available, that figure has climbed to over $182 billion for the 12 years between 1994 and 2006.

Canadian tab for corporate welfare exceeds $180 billion; no evidence that subsidies provide net benefits
News Release
December 10, 2008
VANCOUVER, BC—While politicians in Ottawa argue over how much additional money the government should give business in the name of economic stimulation, a new report from independent research organization the Fraser Institute shows that Canadians already provided more than $182 billion in corporate welfare to businesses between 1994 and 2006.

The Fraser Institute
"A free and prosperous world through
choice, markets and responsibility"
[ Sourcewatch calls The Fraser Institute
"a libertarian think tank based in Vancouver."

Democracy Watch
Democracy Watch is Canada's leading citizen group advocating democratic reform, government accountability and corporate responsibility, and the most successful national citizen advocacy group in Canada over the past 13 years in winning systemic changes to key laws.

20 Steps towards a Modern, Working Democracy
Democracy Watch's campaign mandate, 20 Steps towards a Modern, Working Democracy, sets out changes that all governments in Canada should enact (according to their respective powers) to ensure that Canadian citizens have a greater and more meaningful role in government and business decision-making in Canada.

Corporate Responsibility Resources in Canada and elsewhere
- 75+ links organized under the following categories:
* Company Information Search Sites * General Corporate Activity Tracking Sites * Business Ethics and Ethical Investment Sites * Boycott Sites * Canadian Government Consumer Help Websites * Complain about Canadian Corporations violating OECD Guidelines * Complain About Your Bank, Trust, Insurance or Investment Company * Complain About Misleading Phone Calls from Businesses * Canadian Courts, Tribunals and Commissions and Rulings * Laws from Countries Around the World * Canadian Corporate Lobbyists Search Sites * Donations to Canadian and U.S. Political Parties and Candidates * Chemicals Released in Your Community in Canada * Media Accountability * Find Low-Cost Gasoline Across Canada

Democracy Watch

Related link:

CSR Directory - "Resources for Promoting Global Business Principles and Best Practices"
- 700+ links to progressive companies, groups, councils, foundations (etc.) promoting corporate social responsibility, in Canada and around the world

CSRwire - Corporate Social Responsibility Newswire
"CSR is defined as the integration of business operations and values, whereby the interests of all stakeholders including investors, customers, employees, and the environment are reflected in the company's policies and actions."
- based in Vermont, U.S., but includes Canadian content

Top Ten Wealthiest People in History
Bill Gates, the 20th richest person in the history of the world
Lists of people by wealth
[ Wikipedia ]

New Year’s party still going for top CEOs
Press Release
January 2, 2008
TORONTO - By the time most Canadians roll up their sleeves to begin a new year of work, Canada's best paid 100 CEOs will already be having a good year: They'll pocket the national average wage of $38,998 by 10:33 am January 2nd.

Complete report:

The Great CEO Pay Race: Over Before it Begins (PDF file - 326K, 12 pages)
December 2007

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Executive Excess 2007: The Staggering Social Cost of U.S. Business Leadership (PDF file - 988K, 32 pages)
14th Annual CEO Compensation Survey
This report, released in August 2007, provides data and analysis about CEO compensation and the CEO-worker pay gap. Also include comparisons of compensation for U.S. business leaders with other U.S. leaders and European business leaders, and proposals for change. Opens directly into a PDF document. From the Institute for Policy Studies and United for a Fair Economy.
Institute for Policy Studies
The Institute for Policy Studies strengthens social movements with independent research, visionary thinking, and links to the grassroots, scholars and elected officials.

Found in:
Librarians' Internet Index

Two days, two reports, two very different worlds
June 29, 2007
The World Wealth Report 2007 released on Wednesday by Merrill Lynch and Capgemini reports that the very rich (so-called high net worth individuals – HNWI) are getting even richer. And the forecast is the extremely wealthy are going to get even richer due to their dominance of global capital markets, especially commercial real estate and real estate investment trusts. Meanwhile, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives released a detailed research report on Thursday called Rising Profit Shares, Falling Wage Shares which shows that real hourly wages for workers (the people that do things, rather than own things) “have been stagnant for 30 years running”.The two studies make fascinating reading, when set side-by-side...
The Wellesley Institute Blog
[ The Wellesley Institute ]

Canadian workers’ paycheques in 30-year holding pattern : Study
Press Release
June 28, 2007
OTTAWA – Canadians are working harder and smarter, contributing to a growing economy, but their paycheques have been stagnant for the past 30 years, says a new study by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

Complete study:

Rising Profit Shares, Falling Wage Shares - (PDF File, 301K, 16 pages)

Related link: is a project of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
"(...)What does the growing gap look like? In 2004, the richest 10% of families raising children earned 82 times more than the poorest 10% -- almost triple the ratio of 1976, when they earned 31 times more. In after-tax terms the gap is at a 30-year high"

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

The Poverty Business
Inside U.S. companies' audacious drive to extract more profits from the nation's working poor

"(...) In recent years, a range of businesses have made financing more readily available to even the riskiest of borrowers. Greater access to credit has put cars, computers, credit cards, and even homes within reach for many more of the working poor. But this remaking of the marketplace for low-income consumers has a dark side: Innovative and zealous firms have lured unsophisticated shoppers by the hundreds of thousands into a thicket of debt from which many never emerge."

NOTE: you'll find links to the following related items on the same page as the above article:

* Chart: Borrowing Binge
* Graphic: Extreme Interest
* Chart: The Other Banking System
* Graphic: From Thin Wallets, Big Money
* Study Now—And Pay And Pay And Pay Later
* Chart: Expensive Debt
* The Economics of the Poverty Business
* Cutting the Cost of Poverty

Business Week - May 21/07 issue

Time to get Big Business off the Dole
News Release
January 16, 2007
"(...)A new report from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, entitled On the Dole: Businesses, Lobbyists and Industry Canada’s Subsidy Programs tracks billions of dollars in handouts for the period April 1, 1982, to March 31, 2006. All said, the industry department authorized $18.4-billion in various subsidies, paid to businesses, associations and foundations in 47,960 separate grants, contributions, loans and loan guarantees from – incredibly – 150 different programs. This figure does not include subsidies from other departments, federal regional development agencies, or corporate welfare programs from other levels of government.

Complete report:

On the Dole:
Businesses, Lobbyists and Industry Canada’s Subsidy Programs
(PDf file - 513K, 33 pages)
January 2007

Canadian Taxpayers Federation

Related Link:

Corporate welfare alive and well
January 19, 2007
Carol Goar
"It's getting lonely on the battlefield. A generation ago, David Lewis galvanized fellow New Democrats and caught the imagination of the nation with his campaign against "corporate welfare bums."The governing Liberals staunched the outflow of funds for a while. But when Canadians stopped looking, they reverted to their old habits. Two and a half years ago, Stephen Harper revived the NDP war cry, vowing that a Conservative government would "get out of the grants and subsidies game." But once he became Prime Minister, he started handing out money to Pratt & Whitney, Alcan and other industrial giants. Today, only the Canadian Taxpayers Federation is manning the barricades."
The Toronto Star

Special Report
The 400 Richest Americans
September 21, 2006
A nine-figure fortune won’t get you much mention these days, at least not here. This year, for the first time, everyone in The Forbes 400 has at least $1 billion.


The Top Ten:

1. William H. Gates III
2. Warren E. Buffett
3. Sheldon Adelson
4. Lawrence J. Ellison
5. Paul G. Allen
6. Jim C Walton*
7. Christy Walton*
8. S. Robson Walton*
9. Michael Dell
10. Alice L. Walton*
[*NOTE that four of the ten top billionaires in the U.S. are from the family that owns Wal-Mart, the American juggernaut that routinely gives its new staff applications for the local welfare and food stamp programs because Wal-Mart employees aren't paid enough to make ends meet.]
- see the special Wal-Mart section further down on this page

Back to Forbes:
"The collective net worth of the nation’s wealthiest climbed $120 billion, to $1.25 trillion."

To put this figure in perspective:

In 2002, $1.25 trillion represented about 12% of the U.S. gross domestic product. (

With a population of about 83 million, Germany’s total government revenue in 2003 was $1.25 trillion (

In total, about $1.25 trillion of annual public spending is on security and support (Medical care - Cash aid - Food benefits - Housing benefits - Education aid - Services - Jobs and training - Energy assistance )

Cost of Iraq War to top $1.25 trillion dollars, says academic
Rhett A. Butler,
September 20, 2005



Modernizing Income Security for Working Age Adults

Time For A Fair Deal
Task Force Addresses Urgent Need to Reform Income Security Policies with Unveiling of Report
(PDF file - 134K, 8 pages)
Press Release
May 15, 2006
[version française du communiqué:
Un traitement équitable s'impose
Un rapport du groupe de travail indique un besoin urgent de réforme en matière sécurité du revenu
] (fichier PDF - 135Ko, 10 pages)

TORONTO, ON – (May 15, 2006) - Today in Toronto an unprecedented coalition of business, labour, academic, non-profit, and think tank leaders released their report “Time for a Fair Deal” calling for fundamental reform of Canada’s income security programs for working-age adults.

Declaring the current system in need of a thorough overhaul, The Task Force on Modernizing Income Security for Working-Age Adults (MISWAA) identified three key issues plaguing low-income Canadians:

- Many working people cannot earn enough to make ends meet even when working full-time for a full year – at least 30% of low-wage workers fall into this group,
- Employment Insurance (EI) no longer covers the majority of the temporarily unemployed – in Ontario only 27% receive EI benefits, and only 22% receive EI benefits in Toronto, and
- Existing social assistance programs are punitive, make it difficult to escape poverty, and create a “welfare trap” for many.

Key recommendations to the federal government include:

- Reforming Employment Insurance to address the significant decline in coverage,
- Introducing through the tax system a new national refundable tax credit and working income supplement to support low-income Canadians,
- Providing a national disability income support program for persons whose disabilities are so substantial they cannot enter the paid labour force.

Key recommendations to the Ontario Government include:

- Establishing an independent body, with representation from employers and labour, to recommend periodic increases to the minimum wage,
- Implementing a seamless and integrated child benefit platform for low-income parents with children that pays child benefits to all low-income parents, including those receiving social assistance,
- Reducing the impediments to leaving social assistance by providing prescription drug and dental benefits to low-income workers,
- Strengthening the enforcement of employment standards to protect the rights of workers under the law,
- Restoring the asset limits for those receiving social assistance to levels that allow savings for contingencies and help support the transition to work,
- Improving training and employment supports for social assistance recipients and low-income workers,
- Introducing reforms to the Ontario Disability Support Program, including returning benefit levels to those received by senior citizens who have no other source of income, and
- Uploading social assistance benefit costs from municipalities to the province.

Complete report:

Time for a Fair Deal (PDF file - 271K, 67 pages)


MISWAA was formed in the fall of 2004 by the Toronto City Summit Alliance, a broad-based coalition of civic leaders in the Toronto region, and by St. Christopher House, a multi-service neighbourhood centre that works with low-income people in Toronto. The Task Force is a diverse group made-up of over fifty experts and leaders from major employers, policy institutes, labour unions, academia, community organizations, advocacy groups, foundations and governments, as well as individuals with first-hand knowledge of income security programs.

MISWAA Frequently-Asked Questions (PDF file - 106K, 7 pages)

Related Links:

Google Web Search Results:
"modernizing income security, report, Toronto"
Google News search Results:
"modernizing income security, report, Toronto"

Compromise versus conviction
May 19
By Carol Goar
"Compromise hurts, especially when people come to the table with strong convictions. Sometimes it is the price of progress. Sometimes the sacrifices outweigh the gains. For the past year and a half, 51 of Toronto's most civic-minded people have wrestled with these trade-offs. The result is a not-quite-unanimous report released this week titled Time for a Fair Deal. It sets out a hard-headed plan to tackle adult poverty, a social blight that governments refuse to address and middle-class voters blithely overlook. Given the diversity of the task force — members ranged from senior corporate executives to militant anti-poverty activists — it is a tribute to the group's dedication that it stayed the course. But its report reflects a clash of visions that could not be reconciled."
The Toronto Star

Task Force on Modernizing Income Security for Working Age Adults ("MISWAA")
- incl. links to : In the News · Press Releases · Task Force and Working Group Members · Contact Us · Reports · Frequently Asked Questions

St. Christopher House
“St. Chris has 92 years of experience working with diverse individuals, families and groups. We provide support to people of all ages, including immigrants and people who are lower-income. We are not a religious organization in any way. St. Christopher House is strongly committed to community development in all aspects of our work.”

Toronto City Summit Alliance
"The Toronto City Summit Alliance is a coalition of civic leaders in the Toronto region. The Alliance was formed to address challenges to the future of Toronto such as expanding knowledge-based industry, poor economic integration of immigrants, decaying infrastructure, and affordable housing."

Boston Consulting Group - Toronto Office
"BCG Toronto was created through the merger of The Canada Consulting Group and The Boston Consulting Group, and in the years since then, it has more than tripled in size."

Source: is a new world-wide movement for a better global economy. is a movement of consumers, workers and shareholders speaking with one voice to counterbalance the growing power of large corporations.
(4,856,557 members worldwide as at June 26, 2014

Here’s what we stand for:
Governments that answer to citizens – not corporations
Fair treatment of workers and the right of every human being to make a living, safely and ethically, for themselves and their family;
The right of ordinary consumers to products that are produced and marketed ethically, sustainably and transparently;
The right of communities to manage and protect their own environment and natural resources;
Business models that put people and the planet first instead of being driven by shortsighted greed.



Wal-Mart Anti-Logo
Articles on Walmart
* T-shirts, Bumper Stickers, Buttons
* Studies and Reports on Walmart and Big Boxes
* Reports and Economic Impact Studies on Walmart and Big Box Development
* Internal Company Documents on Stopping Unions
* Books, Films and Music on Walmart
* Anti-Walmart, Pro-Walmart and Informational Website Links
* Complete Index of Walmart Articles at Reclaim Democracy


Wal-Mart Website home page


Why the prominence of Wal-Mart links on this page?
(You can skip all of the Wal-Mart stuff by skipping down past this red-bordered box, by the way...)

Because Wal-Mart is a large part of what's wrong with the world today...


Watching the Growth of Walmart Across America
Watch a visual representation of Wal Mart's growth over the past 40 years.


Why Did Obama Go to Costco?
Our Wage Calculator Explains

By Tasneem Raja and Jaeah Lee
January 29, 2014
This morning, President Obama visited a Costco in suburban Maryland to reemphasize the theme of income inequality he sounded in the State of the Union speech last night. Our calculator shows why Obama chose the home of the giant pickle jar and behemoth TP package: Even at the relatively low wages paid by big-box retailers, slightly better pay can mean the difference between inescapable poverty and a modest living.

Click the link above to use the calculator to check how many hours it would take you to make a living working at Costco vs. Walmart.
NOTE : The calculator compares Costco and Walmart wages in the U.S. only, but it mirros the situation in Canada.

- Go to the Minimum Wage / Living Wage Links page:


[ ]

How McDonald's and Wal-Mart Became Welfare Queens
By Barry Ritholtz
November 13, 2013
It seems that welfare queens are back in the news these days. The old stereotype was an inner-city unwed mother -- that’s dog-whistle-speak for black -- having multiple babies to get ever bigger welfare checks (throw in a new Cadillac and the myth is complete). Regardless, welfare reform of the 1990s ended that narrative. No, the new welfare queens are even bigger, richer and less deserving of taxpayer support. The two biggest welfare queens in America today are Wal-Mart and McDonald's. (...)

According to one study [ ], American fast food workers receive more than $7 billion dollars in public assistance. As it turns out, McDonald's has a “McResource” line [ ] that helps employees and their families enroll in various state and local assistance programs. It exploded into the public when a recording of the McResource line [ ] advocated that full-time employees sign up for food stamps and welfare.

Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest private sector employer, is also the biggest consumer of taxpayer supported aid. According to Florida Congressman Alan Grayson, in many states, Wal-Mart employees are the largest group of Medicaid recipients. They are also the single biggest group of food stamp recipients. Wal-mart’s "associates" are paid so little [ ] , according to Grayson, that they receive $1,000 on average in public assistance. These amount to massive taxpayer subsidies for private companies.

Bloomberg connects influential decision makers to a dynamic network of information, people and ideas. Our strength - quickly and accurately delivering data, news and analytics through innovative technology - is at the core of everything we do. With over 15,000 employees in 192 locations, we deliver business and financial information, news and insight around the world.


Why Shopping at Walmart Is No Bargain
December 12, 2013
Despite 1,500 protests nationwide against Walmart, the world's biggest retailer claimed its most lucrative Black Friday ever in 2013. Our friends and neighbors flock there. They do - even those who have seen mom-and-pop stores shut down when Walmart moved into town, who miss being able to pick up one or two items and be out of a store in 10 minutes, who personally know Walmart employees relying on food stamps and who have heard how much money the Walton family continues to accumulate.

Walmart is the poster child for how huge corporations have undermined people's ability to make a living. It does this by sending manufacturing abroad to countries where labor is cheap, at the same time paying its own employees less than a living wage, using other unfair labor practices in numerous locations in the United States, and undercutting locally owned enterprises right out of business. It harms Main Streets and local commerce centers across the country and further drives people to malls.

So why do people go there? When asked this question, Walmart shoppers uniformly respond that "it's cheap and convenient, and I can't afford to shop at [other places]."

Feature length documentary:

WAL-MART: THE HIGH COST OF LOW PRICE (video, duration 1:37:38)
This hour-and-a-half feature length documentary uncovers a retail giant's assault on families and American values. The film dives into the deeply personal stories and everyday lives of families and communities struggling to fight a goliath. A working mother is forced to turn to public assistance to provide healthcare for her two small children. A Missouri family loses its business after Wal-Mart is given over $2 million to open its doors down the road. A mayor struggles to equip his first responders after Wal-Mart pulls out and relocates just outside the city limits. A community in California unites, takes on the giant, and wins! Producer/Director Robert Greenwald and Brave New Films take you on an extraordinary journey that will change the way you think, feel -- and shop.



Congressional Report Singles Out Walmart as a Drag on US Economy
By Tracy Crawford
May 31, 2013
Walmart’s low wages cost taxpayers a lot of money and contribute to national debt, this according to a new congressional report. One Walmart supercenter can cost taxpayers as much as $251,000 in food stamps alone. When all other potential costs are added in, the bill can come to about $900,000 per Supercenter. A typical supercenter employs about 300 people, so this calculates to about $3,000 per person in costs that may have to be borne by US taxpayers.

Green Plug District

The report:

The Low-Wage Drag on Our Economy:
Wal-Mart’s low wages and their effect on taxpayers and economic growt
h (PDF - 1.8MB, 20 pages)
Prepared by the Democratic staff of the U.S. House
Committee on Education and the Workforce
May 2013
Rising income inequality and wage stagnation threaten the future of America’s middle class. While corporate profits break records, the share of national income going to workers’ wages has reached record lows.

U.S. House
Committee on Education and the Workforce


Wal-Mart Christmas Ornaments Made Under
Illegal Sweatshop Conditions in China

Press Release
December 12, 2007
Wal-Mart Christmas ornament workers toil 10 to 15 hours a day, seven days a week, going for months without a day off. Many workers earn as little as 26 cents an hour—just half of China’s legal minimum wage. Workers handle toxic chemicals without protective gear. Some children as young as 12 worked in the factory. At a press conference at Rockefeller Center in New York City, in the shadow of the Christmas Tree, the country’s leading labor rights activist, National Labor Committee director Charles Kernaghan, released a 58-page report, documenting the horrific conditions under which Wal-Mart’s Christmas ornaments are made in China. The release includes unprecedented photographs and video footage of child laborers and workers in the Spray Painting department handling potentially dangerous chemicals without the most rudimentary safety gear. The National Labor Committee’s report, “A Wal-Mart Christmas Brought to You from a Sweatshop in China” provides a rare inside view of the giant Guanzhou Huanya ornaments factory in Guangdong, where every single labor law, not to mention internationally recognized worker rights standards, are being grossly violated on a daily basis.

National Labor Committee (New York) - "Putting a human face on the global economy"


Costco Rules, Wal-Mart Drools
Bucking a big-box myth, a student finds remarkable variations in how two giants do business
By Angela Wilson
February 20, 2007
Big-box business has a bad name. As one-stop shopping becomes the new retail model, specialty stores can no longer compete with multi-national corporations. With employee and growth policies that are fiercely criticized by activist groups, corporations like Wal-Mart and Canadian Tire are setting industry standards. However, emerging from the dismal landscape of the retail industry is an established and innovative competitor. Hidden behind skyrocketing stacks of bulk merchandise in warehouses across North America, Costco Corporation has been softly trying to introduce new industry standards since 1983.
The Tyee (BC alternative media)


Internal Memo Reveals Attitudes Toward Employees Within Wal-Mart, Inc.
Vice president views workers as cogs to be replaced before they attain "costly" wages, benefits. [dead link]
October 26, 2005
By Steven Greenhouse and Michael Barbaro
First published (with different title) in the N.Y. Times, Oct. 26, 2005
"An internal memo sent to Wal-Mart's board of directors proposes numerous ways to hold down spending on health care and other benefits while seeking to minimize damage to the retailer's reputation. Among the recommendations are hiring more part-time workers and discouraging unhealthy people from working at Wal-Mart. In the memorandum, M. Susan Chambers, Wal-Mart's executive vice president for benefits, also recommends reducing 401(k) contributions and wooing younger, and presumably healthier, workers by offering education benefits. The memo voices concern that workers with seven years' seniority earn more than workers with one year's seniority, but are no more productive. To discourage unhealthy job applicants, Ms. Chambers suggests that Wal-Mart arrange for "all jobs to include some physical activity (e.g., all cashiers do some cart-gathering)." The memo acknowledged that Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, had to walk a fine line in restraining benefit costs because critics had attacked it for being stingy on wages and health coverage. Ms. Chambers acknowledged that 46 percent of the children of Wal-Mart's 1.33 million United States employees were uninsured or on Medicaid. Wal-Mart executives said the memo was part of an effort to rein in benefit costs, which to Wall Street's dismay have soared by 15 percent a year on average since 2002. Like much of corporate America, Wal-Mart has been squeezed by soaring health costs. The proposed plan, if approved, would save the company more than $1 billion a year by 2011. More...
Source: (U.S)

" to create a representative democracy with an actively participating public, where citizens don't merely choose from a menu of options determined by elites, but play an active role in guiding the country and political agenda."

Complete Text of Internal Wal-Mart Memo:
Supplemental Benefits Documentation - Board of Directors Retreat Fiscal Year 06
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. - Benefits Strategy [Confidential]
(PDF file - 375K, 26 pages)
[dead link]

Related Link:

Links to Anti Wal-Mart and Pro Wal-Mart Web Sites
Articles, Studies and Resources on Wal-Mart - links to over two dozen online resources + links
- incl. Articles on Wal-Mart - T-shirts, Bumper Stickers, Buttons - Related Articles of Interest - Studies and Reports on Wal-Mart and Big Boxes (separate page) - Internal Company Documents on Stopping Unions (separate page) - Anti-Walmart & Pro-Walmart Links, Community Organizations Fighting Big Box battles (separate page)


How Costco Became the Anti-Wal-Mart
Company has succeeded with generous employee compensation

By Steven Greenhouse
First published by the NY Times, July, 17, 2005
NOTE: From the editor: "While Costco unquestionably provides better jobs than Wal-Mart and its Sam's Club division, is its overall impact much better when community, environmental and other concerns are weighed? We urge you to consider that doing your business with community-based enterprise is usually the most responsible choice."


Articles, Studies and Resources on Wal-Mart
- links to over three dozen online resources + links

(U.S) ]
" to create a representative democracy with an actively participating public, where citizens don't merely choose from a menu of options determined by elites, but play an active role in guiding the country and political agenda."


Wake-Up Wal-Mart
The "Wake-Up Wal-Mart Campaign" is about Americans joining together in common purpose to change Wal-Mart. There is only one force powerful enough to change the #1 Fortune 500 company in the world – the American people.
We are 50,000 Americans and growing. We are grassroots leaders, community groups and activists who have woken up to the high costs of Wal-Mart and recognize Wal-Mart’s negative impact on our jobs, our wages, our health care and our communities. (...) We will be a vehicle through which millions of Americans can join together, from neighborhoods all across our nation, to harness the power of our consumer behavior and use it to reform a company. America’s largest corporation must reflect America’s values."

Related Links:

United Food and Commercial Workers - Washington, D.C.
United Food and Commercial Workers - Canada - Rexdale, ON

----------------------------------------------------------------- - Making Change at Wal-Mart. Our community. Our Future
on the streets, in the media, and in the customer’s mind!”
Around the country, Walmart workers and community members are standing up and calling on Walmart to provide better jobs and be a better neighbor.
Help us change the world’s largest private employer.


Is Wal-Mart Good for America?
"They're rolling back prices, rolling back the competition, and rolling jobs overseas..."
November 16, 2004
- incl. links to : introduction + secrets of wal-mart's success + transforming america + china connection + interviews - producer's notebook + american radio work's companion reports + join the discussion + correspondent's chat
teacher's guide + press reaction + tapes & transcripts + credits

Wal-Mart at a Glance
- stats and facts that capture Wal-Mart's size and scale:
* 100 million: The number of people who shop at Wal-Mart's 3400 American stores every week.
* 1.2 million: The number of Wal-Mart associates in the U.S. Any full- or part-time Wal-Mart employee, up to and including the CEO, is considered an "associate," in Wal-Mart parlance. Internationally, Wal-Mart employs an additional 330,000 associates.
*1979: The year Wal-Mart's sales first top $1 billion.
* $256 billion : Wal-Mart's sales in 2003. In the words of Wal-Mart CFO Tom Schoewe, Wal-Mart's sales are equal to "one IBM, one Hewlett Packard, one Dell computer, one Microsoft and one Cisco System -- and oh, by the way, after that we got $2 billion left over."
* 8 percent: The amount of total U.S. retail sales, excluding automobiles, accounted for by Wal-Mart.
* $9.98: The average full-time hourly wage for a Wal-Mart employee. The average full-time hourly wage in metro areas (defined as areas with a population of 50,000 or more) is $10.38. In some urban areas it is higher: $11.03 in Chicago, $11.08 in San Francisco, and $11.20 in Austin.

Watch Online - link directly to streaming video of the entire show (broken up into smaller segments for faster downloading)
NOTE: if you can't see any video, it may be because you're behind a corporate firewall, e.g., if your Internet connection is from a government or university computer network, for security reasons.
You should have no problem viewing the videos from home, even with a dialup connection.

[ PBS ]

Notes for an address by Paul Martin Prime Minister of Canada and Co-chair of the Commission on the Private Sector and Development
Speech by the Prime Minister
March 1, 2004
United Nations Headquarters, New York

CSRwire - Corporate Social Responsibility Newswire
"CSR is defined as the integration of business operations and values, whereby the interests of all stakeholders including investors, customers, employees, and the environment are reflected in the company's policies and actions."
- based in Vermont, U.S., but includes Canadian content
CSR Directory - "Resources for Promoting Global Business Principles and Best Practices"
- 700+ links to progressive companies, groups, councils, foundations (etc.) promoting corporate social responsibility, in Canada and around the world
Related Links: - "for those hungry to make business responsible"
Google Canada Search : "Corporate Social Responsibility"
Google Canada Search : "Corporate Social Responsibility, Canada"

The following is a partial list of Canadian and international organizations that make up what many call "the corporate sector" and some of the think tanks and lobby groups who support the "corporate agenda". For links to a plethora of sites about the corporate agenda do a search on the terms "corporate agenda" using

Bank of Canada
Bank of Montreal
Canada Trust
Royal Bank
Bank of Nova Scotia
Toronto-Dominion Financial Group (formerly the TD Bank)
National Bank of Canada
Laurentian Bank
Canadian Bankers Association
Conference Board of Canada
Canadian Business for Social Responsibility
Canada Business Service Centres

Canadian Federation of Independent Business
Canadian Tax Foundation
Canadian Taxpayers Federation
Institute for Research on Public Policy
Public Policy Forum
The Couchiching Institute of Public Affairs
The Fraser Institute
Central Bank Websites
The Family Research Council

The Heartland Institute
The Heritage Foundation
The Claremont Institute
Privatization of Social Security
RAND Home Page
Pacific Research Institute for Public Policy
Cato Institute
Business for Social Responsibility
Global Services Network
Global Business Dialogue on Electronic Commerce
International Chamber of Commerce
The Business Roundtable
TransAtlantic Business Dialogue
Council on Competitiveness
Institute for International Economics
International Monetary Fund
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
World Economic Forum
World Trade Organization
World Bank Group

*The Sincerest Form of Flattery...(?)
Whirled Bank
- "our dream is a world full of poverty"
World Bunk - "Who are you going to believe? Me, or your own eyes?"

San Francisco-based CorpWatch has been educating and mobilizing people through the website and various campaigns, including the Climate Justice Initiative and the UN and Corporations Project.Until recently we were known as TRAC-Transnational Resource & Action Center, and our website was called Corporate Watch. In March 2001 we simplified the situation by bringing TRAC together with our Internet presence under one name, one logo and a matching website address: CorpWatch.

Canadian Community Reinvestment Coalition - The Canadian Community Reinvestment Coalition is a coalition of over 100 anti-poverty, consumer, community economic development, labour and small business groups representing over three million people from every province and the Northwest Territories that advocates for bank accountability in Canada. 

Democracy Watch
Democracy Watch is an independent, non-profit, non-partisan Canadian citizen advocacy organization that  works with Canadian citizens and organizations in pushing Canadian governments and businesses to empower Canadians in their roles as voters,citizens, taxpayers, consumers and shareholders. Our aim is to help reform Canadian government and business institutions to bring them into line with the realities of a modern, working democracy.
Central and Eastern European NGO Network for Monitoring the Activities of International Financial Institutions

Gangs of America: The Rise of Corporate Power and the Disabling of Democracy

April 2003
"Corporations are the dominant force in modern life, surpassing even church and state. The largest are richer than entire nations, and courts have given these entities more rights than people. To many Americans, corporate power seems out of control. According to a Business Week/Harris poll released in September 2000, 82 percent of those surveyed agreed that “business has too much power over too many aspects of our lives.”
Complete Report (PDF file - 987K, 307 pages)
Table of Contents (HTML) - incl. links to each of the first seven chapters of the book (in PDF format only)
Purchase a paper copy of this report
Links to (80+) related sites



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