The $64 Billion Federal Budget Deficit is intended to Finance Canada's Chartered Banks
By Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research (external - login to view), January 25, 2009
The Conservative government has leaked the details of Tuesday's budget. They have announced a $64 billion deficit.
The Harper government, which has consistently committed itself to a "balanced budget", now claims that deficit spending is required to boost the economy at the height of a major economic recession.
Does this constitute a turnaround in federal government economic policy?
Is the government really committed to running a budget deficit with a view to stimulating demand and reversing the tide of economic decline.
Or is there a hidden agenda?
A modest $500 million farm modernization program, a $1 billion fund "to send workers from hard-hit industries back to school", the reduction in the Goods and Services Tax (GST)... The figures do not seem to add up to a staggering $64 billion.
Where is the bulk of the money going? These budget allocations do not explain the dramatic increase in the budget deficit.
Canada's Bank Bailout
The budget deficit should come as no surprise.
It is directly related to a $75 billion dollar bank bailout program for Canada's chartered banks, announced, virtually unnoticed, four days before the October Federal election.
The bank bailout received close to no media coverage; its budgetary implications were not analyzed.
In a statement by Prime Minister Harper on October 10, the bank bailout was casually presented as a commitment by the Federal government to purchase an initial $25 billion in "secure" bank mortgages from the Canadian chartered banks. The transaction would be implemented through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp;
The decision implies a money transfer into the coffers of Canada's financial institutions. The money is "fungible" and can be used"Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) will purchase up to $25 billion in insured mortgage pools as part of the Government of Canada’s plan, announced today, to maintain the availability of longer-term credit in Canada." (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Supports Canadian Credit Markets, CHMC Press Release, 10 October 2009 (external - login to view))