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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Daily Update: September 16, 2022

Canadian dollar hits lowest since 2020 as Aussie takes a hit, food inflation may have peaked, says head of Canadian grocery giant, and more.

In this edition:

Canadian dollar hits lowest since 2020 as Aussie takes a hit

Foreign-exchange markets took a risk-averse turn Thursday, sending the Canadian dollar to its weakest against the greenback in almost two years and Australia’s currency close to the lowest since the early months of the Covid pandemic.

The US dollar-loonie pair rose as much as 0.6 per cent to 1.3240, topping the mid-July level of 1.3224 that had been the highest since November 2020. The milestone comes amid a broad-based surge that’s seen the greenback hit multiyear peaks against most of its major peers in recent weeks. The Aussie slid 0.8 per cent to a low of US$0.6696 Thursday, close to the US$0.6682 level it reached in July that was the weakest since the first half of 2020.

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Food inflation may have peaked, says head of Canadian grocery giant

The worst of food inflation may be over as supplier demands for price increases appear to have subsided, said the head of one of Canada’s biggest grocery chains.

“The waves of cost increases are slowing down appreciably,” Michael Medline, chief executive of Sobeys’ parent Empire Co. Ltd., said in an interview on Sept. 15. “And, I’m not a sooth sayer, but we’re hoping that it’s going to lead to lower rates of inflation for consumers.”

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COVID-19 cases and deaths down in Ontario from week before

Public Health Ontario says COVID-19 cases and deaths are down in the most recent week of data available, but outbreaks in nursing homes are on the rise. The agency says there were 6,968 cases of COVID-19 recorded during the week of Sept. 4 to 10, compared to 8,175 the previous week. There were 54 deaths in the latest week of data, and 70 deaths the week before.

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Wholesale sales decline in July

Following two consecutive months of record-high sales in May and June, wholesale sales fell 0.6% in July to $80.2 billion. Declines in the personal and household goods subsector led the losses for July, followed by the building material and supplies, and the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories subsectors. Sales fell in five of seven subsectors, which represented 63% of wholesale sales.

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Focus on Technology

Google loses appeal over record EU anti-trust Android fine

BBC News

An EU court has largely upheld a record fine against Google for using the Android platform to cement its search engine’s dominance.

The €4.125bn (£3.5bn) penalty is the largest anti-trust fine ever handed down by the European Commission.

It said Google had breached its laws by forcing Android phone-makers to carry its search and web browser apps in order to access the Google Play Store in 2018.

Google has since changed its terms. The firm said it was “disappointed” by the verdict.

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The Real-World AI Issue

The Verge

The term “artificial intelligence” was coined fairly recently in 1955, but the idea of smart machines that do our bidding has far deeper roots, going back to the ancient myths of Greece, India, and China. Perhaps that’s why AI has such an impact on our imagination, and why, in recent years, there’s been so much hype surrounding the technology.

But AI is not a myth, nor is it a magical machine. It’s a technology like any other, that, after decades of research, has reached a new plateau of productivity. Cheap processing power and abundant data have made this possible, and AI and machine learning are now useful tools in a diverse range of fields, including astronomy, health care, transportation, and music.

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Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.

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