Hennessy's Index

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Trish Hennessy, author of the monthly Hennessy's Index, is director of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives' Ontario office. Read back issues of Hennessy's Index at CCPA: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/index and on rabble.ca: http://rabble.ca/taxonomy/term/14793

How many Canadians don't feel financially secure? A lot.

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Hennessy's Index looks at appeal of middle-class economics at a time when 90 per cent of Canadians don't feel financially secure.

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A number is never just a number: The appeal of middle-class economics

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52%

Percentage of Canadians who self-identify as middle class when asked to describe their "social and financial place in society," according to a November 2014 Pollara poll.

73%

Percentage of Quebecers who said they were middle class -- the province most likely to do so, followed by Alberta (57%), the Prairies (47%), B.C. (46%), Atlantic provinces (44%), and Ontario (43%).

57%

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A number is never just a number: Political divides

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62%

Percentage of Canadians who place themselves along the middle of the political spectrum, according to an Environics survey of public opinion.

24%

Proportion of Canadians who self-identify as right-wing -- 10 percentage points higher than those who saw themselves on the political right in 2010. They're more likely to be male, in the top income bracket, and/or immigrant.

14%

Proportion of Canadians who self-identify as left-wing. They're more likely to be under 30, university-educated, and/or cite no religious affiliation.

37%

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A number is never just a number: Billionaires

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1

There is one billionaire for every three million people in the world.

2,325

Number of billionaires in the world in 2014 -- a 7 per cent increase since last year and it represents an all-time record high. They control nearly 4 per cent of the world's wealth.

$7.3 trillion (U.S.)

Combined worth of the world's billionaires in 2014 -- up 12 per cent since last year. That's higher than the market capitalization of all the companies included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

25

Percentage of the world's billionaires living in the United States. It's the country with the most billionaires -- 571 of them.

38

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A number is never just a number: Minimum wage mythology

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4

Number of decades that the average of provincial minimum wages in Canada has remained unchanged in real terms. (Source)

$10.14

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A number is never just a number: Good jobs, bad jobs

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112,000

That's the number of private-sector jobs that disappeared in Canada in August 2014. (Source)

87,000

That's the number of newly self-employed Canadians in August 2014. (Source)

20%

How much less a self-employed Canadian earns, on average, compared to a "regular employee." (Source)

 

66%

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Crude: Lac-Mégantic by the numbers

Photo: Carol Von Canon/flickr
Oil by rail exports from Canada to the U.S. increased by 900 per cent between 2009 and 2012. With increased oil shipments on Canada's railways, can current regulations prevent another Lac-Mégantic?

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A number is never just a number: Lac-Mégantic crude

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72

Number of rail cars carrying Bakken crude oil that crashed into the Quebec community of Lac-Mégantic in July 2013, killing 47 people. (Source)

85

Percentage of tank cars carrying crude oil in North America (at the time of the accident) that were outdated DOT-111 rail cars deemed unsuitable for such transportation. All 72 cars on the MM&A trains that crashed into Lac-Mégantic were old DOT-111s. (Source)

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A number is never just a number: Child-care costs vs. university tuition

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$11,100

Average annual cost of child care for a toddler in Ontario in 2012. Compare that to the $7,180 average cost of university tuition fees in Ontario in 2012/13. (Source and source)

$10,884

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A number is never just a number: Voter turnout -- how low can we go?

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52.1

Percentage of voters who cast a ballot in the 2014 Ontario election (unofficial count), up a bit from the province's 2011 historic low voter turnout of 48 per cent. (Source and source)

64

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