How to manage your finances in the time of COVID-19

An accounting expert offers a wealth of advice – starting with not letting your net worth define your self-worth

How to manage your finances in the time of COVID-19People struggling to pay their debts in a crippled COVID-19 economy can’t avoid tough choices but shouldn’t let it crush them, says a University of Alberta financial expert. Feelings of fear, frustration or shame can overwhelm the clear-headed thinking needed to tackle tough times, but try not to internalize it, advised Mike Maier, an accounting…

Why your bad cell signal isn’t necessarily the carrier’s fault

If you find yourself cursing your cellular provider for the lack of cell signal, remember that it just might be the fault of your car or building’s construction materials or even that leafy tree to your right

Why your bad cell signal isn’t necessarily the carrier’s faultPicture this: You’re driving home from work, just about to finish up a phone meeting through your car’s Bluetooth, when suddenly your call drops – you’re once again in that dreaded dead spot in the middle of the city where important conversations go to die. The default culprit you’re most likely to blame in this…

The inconvenient truth of a mountain of garbage

Consumer spending is important to a healthy economy, but each of us needs to decide where we draw the line between our wants and our needs

The inconvenient truth of a mountain of garbageI felt guilty tossing mixed household and construction materials into container bins at the landfill. We did our very best to reuse and recycle, but we still had a couple of truckloads of stuff to discard. I hadn’t been to the landfill for years, maybe decades, and I was shocked at the change in the…

Tim Hortons adds to its disastrous marketing decisions

Tim Hortons desperately needs to make its Roll Up The Rim campaign work. But the chain may have again missed the mark

Tim Hortons adds to its disastrous marketing decisionsAfter a disastrous campaign last year, Tim Hortons finally got the message and opted to change its 35-year-old Roll Up The Rim campaign. But its new approach is not that simple. The iconic contest is now much shorter and incredibly more complicated. Given its last quarter financial results showed same-store-sales dropping by more than four…

Canada’s dairy sector faces uncertain future

The dairy industry is slowly being trampled by a wave of consumers who see it as one of many options, for a variety of reasons

Canada’s dairy sector faces uncertain futureThere’s been a lot of talk recently about meat alternatives but dairy alternatives are also becoming more popular. And when it comes to dairy in Canada, given our quotas and high tariffs, the stakes are significantly higher. Dairy alternatives can be seen everywhere from grocery stores to coffee shops. These products are no longer confined…

Consumer trust in agriculture is waning

Organized, well-funded groups condemning farming practices on social media are winning the consumer trust battle

Consumer trust in agriculture is waningThe public uses social media every day to express concerns about farming practices. And it’s getting worse. Farmers are criticized for a variety of reasons – for example their environmental stewardship and their ethical behaviour in how they treat livestock. In survey after survey, Canadians generally say they trust farmers, regardless of headlines, social media…

Going bananas for a threatened fruit

A deadly fungus is spreading all over the world, so we can expect to pay more for bananas. But our world-class scientists could help solve the problem

Going bananas for a threatened fruitThe world could run out of bananas. Reports this summer suggest that a banana-killing fungus, Fusarium TR4 or the Panama disease, has reached Latin America. And it could spread, affecting crops sold in the United States and Canada. After having been detected in the Middle East, Asia and Australia, many experts were expecting the highly-contagious…

Surviving the contact sport of buying a used car

Beware con artists, smoothies, carpetbaggers, excuse-makers and truth-stretchers

Surviving the contact sport of buying a used carA few months ago, I got the chance to take my own advice and put my money where my mouth is. My daughter needed a cheap but decent used car – something sensible, with back door/seat access and a decent-sized trunk. Budget: $5,000 max. Here are some of the cars we checked out: 2003 BMW…

How the mobile phone industry meets – or fails – customer expectations

Adrian Chung of J.D. Power talks about the results of the company’s latest wireless survey and why trust is such a huge component

How the mobile phone industry meets – or fails – customer expectationsAdrian Chung, director of the technology, media and telecom practice at J.D. Power in Canada. What are the key results and findings you can take from a recent wireless experience survey you did? Chung: In this year’s edition of the J.D. Power Wireless Purchase Experience study, we saw a decline in overall satisfaction of six…

Air Canada, WestJet rank high in airline satisfaction survey

Among traditional North American carriers, Alaska Airlines ranks highest for the 12th consecutive year

Air Canada, WestJet rank high in airline satisfaction surveyThe J.D. Power 2019 North America Airline Satisfaction Study ranks Air Canada as fourth overall in the traditional carrier category and Calgary-based WestJet as third overall in the low-cost carrier category. “Among Canada-based airlines, Air Canada (729) saw its customer satisfaction score decline five points from 2018. WestJet (758) saw its score increase 11 points…