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"The Ignorant Fool"
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Mastercard rankings show Canadian cities lower on financial centre rankings.



Canada's cities lose ground as commerce centres
Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver are less influential, a new study says, but rank high in ease of doing business
TAVIA GRANT
From Monday's Globe and Mail

June 9, 2008 at 4:28 AM EDT

Canada's largest cities are losing ground as global centres of commerce, a study to be released today suggests.

All three of the country's biggest cities - Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver - slid down the rankings of 75 cities that drive the global economy, according to MasterCard Inc.'s second annual worldwide "centres of commerce" index, released exclusively to the Globe and Mail.

Two factors contributed to the drop: one is that new cities, such as Philadelphia and Osaka, were added to the rankings this year and emerged ahead of the Canadian cities. The second is that other cities, such as Shanghai, are moving up while Canada is remaining relatively still.

"It is, to a large extent, that others are gaining ground," said Maurice Levi, professor of international finance at the University of British Columbia's Sauder School of Business and member of the panel that compiled the index. "There is a real danger if you don't try to move ahead with other cities."

Toronto slipped to 13th place globally from the 12th spot last year. Montreal fell to No. 32 from 27 while Vancouver tumbled to the 37th spot from No. 28.

Where do we fall short? Vancouver and Montreal lack financial flows, such as bond and commodity markets. And every Canadian city could improve with more investment in universities, Mr. Levi said.

"Where you do generate real income and prosperity is through invention and innovation - having trained people. Education's terribly important," he said.

Globally, London is still on top. New York, Tokyo, Singapore and Chicago round out the top five. London reigns supreme because of its "strong and secure economy, vibrant financial markets and a legal and political framework that supports high levels of international trade," the survey proclaimed.

Canadians can still feel a bit smug, however. London, with its reputation for being hideously expensive, still has room for improvement in the "livability" sub-category while Vancouver earned the distinction as world's most livable city.

"Canada seems to outperform the United States in ease of doing business," the report also noted. "Legal safeguards, which make the U.S. a highly litigious country, may be a contributing factor here."

All three Canadian cities ranked in the top 10 globally for ease of doing business.

"We tend to forget that, while yes there are hurdles here and bureaucracy and red tape - but try doing the same thing in a European city or a Latin American city. We actually do pretty well on this," Mr. Levi said.

The study measures broad factors such as political climate, economic stability, education and business activity. More specifically, it includes elements such as the number of five-star hotels, Moody's ratings, access to credit, access to broadband, number of medical schools and quality of health care.

The index was compiled by a panel of nine economists and university professors from around the world.

Top centres of commerce

MasterCard Worldwide ranked 50 cities based on six measures of business accessibility:

London 1. 79.17
New York 2. 72.77
Tokyo 3. 66.6
Singapore 4. 66.16
Chicago 5. 65.24
Hong Kong 6. 63.94
Paris 7. 63.87
Frankfurt 8. 62.34
Seoul 9. 61.83
Amsterdam 10. 60.06
Toronto 13. 58.16


DOUGLAS COULL/THE GLOBE AND MAIL
SOURCE: MASTERCARD WORLDWIDE
 

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www.mtlurb.com
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Its time to review our taxation systems ... its ridiculously expensive now for buisnesses to set up here now that the dollar is as expensive as the greenback!
 

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This is devastating news! I can't go on living knowing that we haven't any world financial centres. Why just the other day I was looking for a decent bond market but alas.. and I have no idea what I'm going to do with my box o' commodities!

It's time to move to Seoul or Shanghai. I would prefer to flee to Australia but that hellhole of a country is world financial centreless as well!
 

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It is nonsense to suggest that the rise in the value of the Canadian dollar is reducing the ranking of Toronto in comparison with other world business centres. Just look at the list and ask which of these cities is less expensive to do business in than Toronto. London and NYC are far more expensive places and they are at the top!
 

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^^Were you for one nanosecond thinking Toronto, or any other Canadian city, was as of important a centre of business than London or NYC? Both of those cities are either two or three times the size of Toronto. Toronto fell one spot. Big deal. Life continues. We'll dig deep, mine our inner strength, and find some way to pull through this catastrophe. ;)
 

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"The Ignorant Fool"
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Surprised that Singapore is so high on the list.
^^
Surprised me too, but I just saw a segment on a business show on CNN as to how the Singaporan govrnment is using a Dubai-like approach in making state owned businesses like private companies and sending tons of their students to the best universities around the world to spur world class research and entreperneurship there when they come home.

I think the biggest factor to Canadian cities poor performance is their smaller size.

Notice all of the top cities are home to the major world stock exchanges.


Philadelphia and Osaka ahead of TO?

I think this survey is a little screwy. :nuts:
 

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Toronto slipped to 13th place globally from the 12th spot last year. Montreal fell to No. 32 from 27 while Vancouver tumbled to the 37th spot from No. 28.
I don't really see the big deal. Toronto's slip is nothing it can't recover from. Montreal's slip may be moderate but considering the relative weakness of Montreal/Quebec's economy in past years to other areas of Canada it could be worse off. I'm surprised Vancouver's could slip so much in 1 year considering nothing has changed at all locally in that time and our economy has been healthy. However, what's even more surprising is that Vancouver was even as high as 28th to begin with. I'm just impressed that it's even included on a ranking of 75 cities that "drive the global economy".
 

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^I don't think our cities are that bad off considering the company they're with.

Toronto is the third best in NA - surpassing LA this year. Montreal is up with the economic powerhouse of Dublin and ahead of some large and important US metros (Dallas, Houston, etc). Vancouver is with the likes of Barcelona, Washington DC, and just shy of Dallas and Houston. I find it amazing Vancouver could be compared to such significant and populous American cities.
 

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. However, what's even more surprising is that Vancouver was even as high as 28th to begin with. I'm just impressed that it's even included on a ranking of 75 cities that "drive the global economy".
I know! I feel the same way. I am impressed that Canadian cities are doing so well on this rating, despite our dollar soaring the way it has. I don't think this is something to mourn.
 

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Anyone else smirk after seeing Vancouver's financial flow at 3.83, just above Chengdu, China?
 

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"The Ignorant Fool"
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I think US cities will slide down going forward because of:

"Canada seems to outperform the United States in ease of doing business," the report also noted. "Legal safeguards, which make the U.S. a highly litigious country, may be a contributing factor here."
 

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Looks like Madrid and Sydney knocked us down a spot, while LA fell a few placed behind as well.
 

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You can rest easy now! Chicago, which is about twice the size of Toronto, definitely has a bigger economy. I was thinking third largest centre of commerce in North and South America was a fairly decent standing.
Don't forget Central America, the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, Antarctica and the entire area between Frankfurt and Singapore!
 
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