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Publications

Emergency Rooms: Fewer Patients, Longer Waits
Viewpoint showing that despite a reduction in the number of patient visits, emergency room wait times in Quebec are worsening
Earlier this year, the media reported that the situation in Quebec emergency rooms had improved in 2018-2019. Yet when we take a closer look at the Department of Health and Social Services data, we see that the opposite has happened, despite a reduction in the number of patient visits.
21 August 2019August 21, 2019

Canada Shows the Way on Stock Markets
Viewpoint examining how Canada’s lighter regulatory touch cuts compliance costs and makes it easier for firms to list
Canada has avoided the great die-off of public companies afflicting American business especially since the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which imposed new, more restrictive accounting and financial transparency rules. But with trends reversing somewhat since 2012, much work remains to be done in Canada to promote access to investment opportunities for the middle class. This would not only further democratize wealth-building for regular Canadians, but also give start-ups even greater ability to raise funds to grow their business.
7 August 2019August 7, 2019

The Unintended Consequences of Municipal By-Laws
Viewpoint highlighting the contradictions we face from two recent policies put forward by the City of Montreal
Montrealers may soon suffer the “unintended consequences” of two municipal policies likely to produce effects that are just the opposite of their stated purpose. This is in line with a dynamic that is well known to economists but often overlooked by politicians.
1 August 2019August 1, 2019

Carbon Taxes: Are the Policies of Ottawa and the Provinces Efficient?
Economic Note examining whether Canada’s carbon pricing systems meet certain basic economic conditions
Since the 1920s and the work of A.C. Pigou, economists have generally agreed that imposing a price on pollution emissions is the most efficient way to reduce those emissions while minimizing the drawbacks associated with interventions aiming to limit pollution. This way of doing things usually yields better results than regulation or other government interventions that do not rely on market mechanisms.
4 July 2019July 4, 2019

Consolidation in the Air Sector: Should We Be Worried?
Viewpoint showing that it is barriers to competition, rather than the size and the number of firms in a market, that are cause for concern
With Air Canada seeking to acquire Air Transat, many public figures have made comments to the effect that this consolidation would lead to price increases. This argument is based on the premise that competition in a given market is determined by the size and the number of firms that are active in that market.
4 June 2019June 4, 2019

The Cumulative Impact of Harmful Policies – The Case of Oil and Gas in Alberta
Research Paper showing that while the global demand for hydrocarbons is expected to keep increasing at least until 2040, Canada’s oil and gas sector is facing serious challenges
According to the International Energy Agency, the global demand for hydrocarbons is expected to keep increasing at least until 2040. Yet in Canada, during the past year or so, an unusually large number of major events—essentially all negative—affected the oil and gas industry. The departure of international companies, pipeline project delays, and unprecedented discounts on Western Canadian Select (WCS) are just some of the signs that the country’s oil and gas sector is facing serious challenges.
9 May 2019May 9, 2019

For a Freer Press, Add Economic Freedom
Viewpoint showing that countries with a free press are generally those that enjoy a high degree of economic freedom
The latest reports on freedom of the press are worrisome. This freedom has declined over the past decade, and 54 journalists were killed on the job in 2018 alone. Several factors explain the level of press freedom of a given country: the nature of the political system, its level of development, or the presence of armed conflicts on its territory, for example. Another important factor, too often ignored, is its degree of economic freedom.
3 May 2019May 3, 2019

Reducing Drug Prices Too Much Will Make Them Inaccessible
Viewpoint explaining how Health Canada’s reform of the pricing mechanism for new drugs could delay their introduction
The Canadian government is planning to change the way prices are set for new patented drugs and cut the maximum prices at which these drugs can be sold by up to 70%. But this reform could prove very costly for patients. If it goes forward and fails to take into account the adverse effects of reference pricing systems, which have been well documented by various international bodies, Canadians could see their access to new drugs slowed down or even compromised.
18 April 2019April 18, 2019

Ottawa Should Simplify the Income Tax Act
Economic Note showing that a detailed examination of Canada’s costly and complicated tax system is needed
Taxpayers always meet the months of March and April with some apprehension, as they will have to devote precious hours of their time to completing their income tax returns, or pay someone else to do it for them. Is it possible to make life easier for taxpayers by simplifying the tax system?
10 April 2019April 10, 2019

Labour Shortage: What Is the Effect of Regulation?
Viewpoint showing how labour laws, interprovincial trade barriers, and the tax burden affect jobs and wages
We are constantly told that there is a shortage of labour in Canada. In 2018, the economy added 163,000 full-time jobs, and the unemployment rate fell to 5.6%, a historic low that can be qualified as full employment. The participation rate for people of prime working age, 25 to 54 years, is 87%. The winds are shifting on the labour market. Employers used to have the upper hand; now, it’s workers who have it.
4 April 2019April 4, 2019

How to Modernize the Taxi Industry
Viewpoint explaining that the new framework for the taxi industry should encourage innovation and aim to maximize the well-being of consumers
In Quebec, as in many other places in the world, a permit is required to provide taxi services. For a long time, this has led to a lack of competition and the resulting effects. The Quebec government will soon table a bill to modernize the taxi industry. On which principles should new regulation be based if it is also to serve as a framework for future innovations in the sector?
14 March 2019March 14, 2019

A New Canadian Partnership: The Promising Opportunity for Interprovincial Free Trade
Policy Paper for the One Country, One Market collaborative campaign showing how Canada can progress toward a true common market
A New Canadian Partnership for domestic free trade could produce economic benefits for Canadians that rival those of international free trade agreements. That’s the conclusion of Professor Ian Brodie, political scientist at the University of Calgary, in a new public policy study for the Montreal Economic Institute, the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (AIMS) and the Canadian Constitution Foundation.
13 March 2019March 13, 2019

Should Super Nurses Be Allowed to Make Diagnoses?
Viewpoint showing that to ensure the best possible access to care, health professionals should be able to use all their skills
Quebec’s Health Minister recently announced that she wanted specialized nurse practitioners (SNPs) to be able to make diagnoses, as is the case everywhere else in Canada. The Collège des médecins du Québec (CMQ) ended up making peace with the idea, while the Fédération des médecins omnipraticiens du Québec (FMOQ) is still not on board, claiming that this act must be reserved to physicians. Is this resistance justified?
28 February 2019February 28, 2019

More Prosperity through Smaller Government
Viewpoint explaining that an economic environment more favourable to productivity growth can raise living standards in the long term
Quebec Premier François Legault has often stated his desire to attract foreign investment into the province and to increase Quebecers’ standard of living. An essential precondition for this is to create an economic environment that is more favourable to productivity growth, considered by economists to be the main determinant of rising living standards in the long term. This can be achieved by reducing the amount of room taken up by the government in the economy, through a decrease in public spending.
13 February 2019February 13, 2019

How to Successfully Reduce the Regulatory Burden
Economic Note providing a roadmap for eliminating the excessive regulation that stifles entrepreneurship and drags down the economy in Canada
In its last Fall Economic Statement, the federal government included a chapter on regulation. It intends to review and remove outdated or duplicative regulatory requirements, keep an eye on our regulatory burden’s effect on our competitiveness, and innovate when it comes to rule-making. While this is a welcome admission that the Canadian regulatory burden is weighing down our competitiveness, with the United States as an easy alternative destination for investment, it still leaves open the question of how exactly to proceed with effectively reducing the regulatory burden.
6 February 2019February 6, 2019

18 Essential Classical Liberal Thinkers
Booklet containing short biographical essays that tell the story of the evolution of classical liberal thought over the past century and a half
This booklet contains short write-ups on the lives and ideas of eighteen classical liberal thinkers from the past century and a half. Together, these short biographical essays tell the story of the evolution of classical liberal thought as the benefits of freedom have spread, though haltingly and unevenly, around the world. And they point the way forward to a future of greater and more widespread wealth and well-being for all.
24 January 2019January 24, 2019

GHG Reductions: Ambitious Targets for an Insignificant Impact
Viewpoint illustrating the negligible impact of Quebec’s emissions on the global climate
The Quebec government has on many occasions signalled its commitment to fighting climate change. The province has set several targets for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, aiming to have them disappear almost completely by 2050. Yet Quebec’s share of global GHG emissions is so tiny that achieving the provincial objectives would have an insignificant impact on the evolution of the temperature of the planet.
17 January 2019January 17, 2019


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