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Friday, May 22, 2015 07:15 AM

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Is US shale about to make a comeback?

Oil prices have rebounded strongly since March. The benchmark WTI prices soared by more than 36 percent in two months, and Brent has jumped by more than 25 percent. There is a newfound bullishness in the oil markets – net long positions on Brent crude
The Federal Reserve and the Monetary Policy Corner   I want to open this posting with a definition.  The Federal Funds Rate (more commonly known as the Fed Funds Rate) is:   "...the interest rate at which depository institutions trade federal funds (balances held at Federal Reserve
The Problem of Excess Reserves   An interesting article by Walker Todd at the American Institute for Economic Research entitled "The Problem of Excess Reserves, Then Now" looks at excess banking system reserves held by the Federal Reserve and analyzes, in a historical context, whether these reserves are going to
The American Consumer Debt Trap   The latest version of the Household Debt and Credit Reportfrom the New York Federal Reserve Bank shows that household debt levels continue to rise, reaching their highest level in the fourth quarter of 2014 since the Great Recession.  
The Real Impact of Weather on Economic Growth   When the rate of economic growth slows down, particularly in the first quarter of the year, the mainstream media seems to focus on the "fact" that bad winter weather has had a negative impact on consumer spending which is responsible for about 70 percent of GDP.  A recent study by

One of the biggest issues gripping the prospective new presidents of the United States this election season is that of the Restoration of the Wire Act. The act, which would be an update to the Federal Wire Act of 1961, would seek to actively end all online gambling in the United States.

It’s a move that’s been backed by casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, and is particularly interesting given just how limited online gambling is in the United States at the moment, compared to how well the industry is doing in Canada, particularly, Toronto.  

Online gambling, or iGaming, has been a prominent business in Toronto ever since its inception just over a decade ago. It involves accessing sites which give players the chance to play online versions of popular casino games from table games such as poker to online slots. Many sites offer players special offers and free bets or spins, while others focus on another growing sector: sports betting.

Today, the business makes around $50 to $75 million for the government annually, with many of these funds coming from established companies in the Toronto region. It is for this reason that many other areas of Canada are now looking to move towards regulated online gambling – for example, there were only four months between a provincial gambling regulator issuing a request for proposals in Ontario and their sites going live.

Similarly, Alberta’s gaming commission asked vendors for proposals to run government-regulated online gaming back in February. The move could be completed as soon as this month. By comparison, it seems the United States is sitting on what could be a hugely lucrative opportunity, particularly if they choose to pass the Restoration of the Wire Act.

They only need to look over at Europe as an example of how profitable regulated online gambling can be – for example, Uptown Aces welcomes players from around the world thanks to its variety of payment methods. Today’s online gambling sites are becoming more innovative than ever, re-creating the land-based casino experience and taking it one step further with interactive games that can be enjoyed by anyone over the legal age.

Gambling is hugely popular amongst Canadians, with 75 per cent of adult gamers gambling last year alone. It is of no surprise, then, that the industry should be shifting towards a more digital approach, akin to the music and photography industries before it. The future looks bright for iGaming in Canada, and it’s certainly something which the United States could learn from. 

The High Cost of Tax Free Savings Accounts   recent study by the Broadbent Institute looks at the impact of the Harper Government's Tax Free Savings Accounts on federal tax revenue.  These plans were first introduced in 2009 and initially allowed Canadians to contribute $5000 annually, a level that was increased to $5,500

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