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Friday News Round Up: October 27, 2017

Here are some stories that caught our eye this week:

Millennials have a lower homeownership rate than baby boomers did at age 30: StatsCan

This week, Statistics Canada shared the results of the 2016 Census. One of the major highlights was that millennials have a lower homeownership rate than baby boomers did when they were aged 30. Just 50.2 per cent of millennials living in their own homes were homeowners, compared to 55.5 per cent of boomers in 1981. In addition, one in three millennials aged 20 to 34 lived with their parents in 2016.

Additional highlights are below:

  • Condos are on the rise – In 2016, 13.3 per cent of Canadians were living in condominiums, an increase of 1.2 per cent since 2011.
  • Average home values in Vancouver and Toronto are much higher than in the rest of Canada: In 2016, the average value of a house in Vancouver was $1,005,920, compared with $734,924 in Toronto and $366,974 in Montreal. The average value across Canada was $443,058, up from $345,182 in 2011.

More props for Canada’s AI strategy

This week, Canada’s AI sector got another vote of confidence from Eric Schmidt, the chairman of Google parent company Alphabet Inc.

In a series of tweets, Schmidt called out Canada as a major source of innovation for AI due to its support from the federal government, universities, large companies, and startups. Schmidt will be speaking with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau next week during the Go North tech conference in Toronto.

Finance Minister shares economic outlook

Canada’s Finance Minister Bill Morneau presented his fall 2017 economic statement on Tuesday. Some highlights from the statement:

  • GDP growth was at 3.1 per cent this year and is projected at 2.1 per cent in 2018  
  • Canada’s unemployment rate was at 6.2 per cent in September, the lowest unemployment rate in almost a decade
  • The Liberal government cut the projected deficit from $28.5B to $19.9B
  • Most of the savings from the deficit cut are being allocated to increases to the Canada child benefit and Canada’s tax credit for low-income earners

Conservative critics note that the government’s promise of a, smaller, $10B deficit was not kept, and there is “not a single year, into the distant future, when this government projects, ever, eliminating the deficit.”

Uber for your wallet

Rideshare giant, Uber, wants to go from the streets to your wallet with the launch of its new no-fee credit card. And the perks sound like an urban-dwelling millennials’ dream.

The Uber Visa Card is designed as a cash-back loyalty program. Paying for an Uber ride will get the cardholder 2 per cent cash back. Other rewards include: 4 per cent cash back for every dollar spent on dining including Uber’s UberEATS on-demand food delivery service; 3 per cent cash back on airlines, hotels and vacation home rentals like Airbnb; 2 per cent cash back on online purchases and subscriptions; and 1 per cent cash back on all other purchases.

The Uber card will also give the cardholder a $50 annual credit toward online subscriptions, like Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime, if the customer spends $5,000 on the card in a year. However, the card is only available in the U.S. for now.

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