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June 2013

June 28, 2021

Mac's wants to sell liquor, hire more staff

Mac's logoForget the Froster...how about a case of beer?

Mac's Convenience Stores is set to create 1,600 new, full-time jobs in Ontario if given the go-ahead to sell beer, wine and spirits in it's stores.

The petitions have been on store counters for quite some time now gaining signatures in support from customers across the province.

Currently, two Mac's stores in Ontario (located in Thamesford and Craigleith) are permitted to sell alcohol.

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June 27, 2021

Couples singing the wedding blues

1038218_66480936The "Big Day" may be farther away than you think.

Financial priorities seem to be getting in the way of that special wedding day, according to a new survey by BMO Bank of Montreal.

The cost of walking down the aisle is estimated at $14,281 and upwards -- a hefty sum for couples just starting their married lives together.

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Yahoo! chief Marissa Mayer turns the other cheek

Once again, I'm glad I'm not a woman. I just don't have the patience.

Earlier this week, Yahoo! CEO and former Google executive Marissa Mayer took the high road at the company's annual meeting when she decided to ignore a loud-mouthed shareholder who sauntered up to the microphone and blurted: "I'm George Polis. I have 2,000 shares of Yahoo. I'm Greek, and I'm a dirty old man, and you look attractive, Marissa."

Some in the audience seemed to find it all very amusing while others simply sat in silence, highlighting the way women in power are often viewed. No one said anything to Polis, however, who then went on to complain about the company's stock performance and whether it would soon be issuing a dividend.

Given that nobody would talk to young CEOs like Mark Zuckerberg or Jeff Weiner that way, do you think Mayer should have taken him to task, as high-profile execs like Sheryl Sandberg or Meg Whitman might have done?

Or was she correct in simply ignoring his comments altogether?

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June 26, 2021

Homelessness an issue in Canada

HomelessWe should all be very grateful to have a roof over our heads.

My dad said that to me once, even though it was our car that we were living in.

Believe it or not, 200,000 Canadians experience homelessness every year.

A new report, The State of Homelessness in Canada 2013, found that homelessness costs the Canadian economy over $7 billion annually including the costs of health care, the criminal justice system, social services and the use of emergency shelters.

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Would you buy a car without taking a test drive?

Even if they ultimately bought there, just about everyone has a story about pressure tactics and broken promises after shopping at a car dealership.

Shopping for a new car is painful. You have to be on your guard at at all times, it's tough to always know what’s true and what’s an exaggeration, and there’s always a significant amount of money at play.

It's all very intimidating. So much so that some potential buyers are skipping the test drive altogether. According to a survey from Maritz Research, roughly 11.4% of consumers who purchased 2012 models didn’t bother to take the vehicle out for a spin before closing the deal.

But, in the United States at least, help is at hand.

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June 25, 2021

Diabetics face discrimination, suffer emotional distress

Diabetes suppliesA new study reports that 15 per cent of people living with diabetes have felt discriminated against due to their disease.

And one in four Canadians with diabetes experiences great emotional distress.

As a mother of two children with Type 1 diabetes (also referred to as insulin dependent diabetes or juvenile diabetes) I have to admit it isn't an easy haul for them.

As a matter of fact, it is a tough world out there not only for people living with diabetes, but also for those who are living with other diseases and disabilities.

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Baby boomers underestimate cost of long-term care: study

Baby boomers have mistaken ideas about the future costs of long-term care and about the years they will spend in retirement, according to a recent Nationwide Financial survey.

When asked to estimate how much a year nursing home care will cost in 2030, they estimated an average of $111,507  -- roughly half the actual estimated costs for that year. However, most correctly estimated current costs at approximately $67,000 a year.

"Nursing home costs have increased more than 4 per cent annually since 1974,” says John Carter, Nationwide's president of retirement plans. "What a year of nursing home care costs today will not even come close to the actual cost when boomers really need it."

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June 24, 2021

Groupon to settle class-action lawsuit

Groupon, the biggest seller of so-called daily deals, has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging the expiration dates on its discount coupons are illegal.

Typically, the policy governing daily deals allows for the customer to be able to redeem an expired coupon but at the purchase price as opposed to its face value. Apparently, that's not the way it's supposed to work, according to most provincial laws.

For instance, if you paid $25 for a $40 Daily Deal voucher, then you are still entitled to redeem it after the stated expiry date for the $25 purchase price but not the $15 promotional value, explains the various law firms representing the group.  

Think you've been had by the local nail boutique? Then you better get on board.

To make a claim about an unused Daily Deal you'll have to certify that you have an unredeemed and unrefunded Daily Deal voucher that expired prior to March 8, 2013. You must also certify that you either attempted to redeem your voucher at the merchant, or that it's not possible for you to attempt to do so.

A good portion of the settlement money will be going to the legal team, of course -- but you never know.

Good luck.

Gordon Powers, MSN Money


June 21, 2021

Real estate is a hot topic for Canadians

1302218_50183007The start of summer is officially here and the conversation quickly turns from the weather to -- well, real estate of course.

Forget hockey. A new national survey revealed that talking about real estate is becoming Canadian's new national pastime.

It is a hot topic, with 84 per cent of Canadians admitting they think about real estate on a regular basis, according to a poll by Zoocasa.

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June 20, 2021

Obesity on the menu for children

Fast food giants are wowing kids with their enticing marketing tactics including  talking dogs, kooky clowns, and colourful cartoon and crowned characters.

And don't forget, each kids' meal comes with the latest and greatest toy.

The list goes on. And so does the obesity.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), childhood obesity is not improving.

The organization points the finger at advertising as the main culprit specifically targeting children via television, social media and smart phones.

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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...