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Business News Summary Headlines

Company releases, economic news, and business coverage.

PM spoke to Wilson-Raybould after SNC-Lavalin was denied a remediation deal

OTTAWA - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould almost two weeks after federal prosecutors informed SNC-Lavalin it would not be invited to negotiate a settlement to help the company avoid criminal prosecution.

Court documents show the Director of Public Prosecutions told the engineering and construction giant last Sept. 4 about its decision not to proceed with negotiations towards a remediation agreement to help SNC-Lavalin avoid bribery and fraud charges.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 12:00 PM

Aurora Cannabis makes board changes, names new lead independent director

EDMONTON - Aurora Cannabis Inc. moved to strengthen its board of directors as it announced chairman Michael Singer will become executive chairman.

The company says Ronald Funk will become the lead independent director, while Shan Atkins will also join the board as a new independent director and head of the audit committee.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 07:50 AM

Tilray to acquire hemp food company Manitoba Harvest for up to $419 million

Cannabis producer Tilray Inc. has signed a deal to acquire Hemp Hearts-maker Manitoba Harvest for up to $419 million in cash and stock as the two companies look to launch CBD-infused products where permissible in the U.S.

The acquisition accelerates the Nanaimo, B.C.-based pot grower's entry into the U.S. market as the hemp food manufacturer's products are already on the shelves of retailers such as Wal-Mart, Costco and Whole Foods on both sides of the border, said Tilray chief executive Brendan Kennedy.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 07:06 AM

Market volatility, mortgages loom over upcoming earnings of Canada's big banks

TORONTO - Canada's biggest banks are set to report on what has traditionally been the strongest quarter of the year, but market volatility and slower mortgage growth during the period could weigh on their latest results.

North American markets saw a sharp selloff at the end of 2018 amid a trade skirmish between China and the U.S. and political uncertainty with a partial shutdown south of the border, potentially hampering the banks' related earnings.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 06:00 AM

Trump wants California to pay back billions for bullet train

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Trump administration said Tuesday that it plans to cancel $929 million awarded to California's high-speed rail project and wants the state to return an additional $2.5 billion that it has already spent.

The U.S. Department of Transportation announcement follows through on President Donald Trump's threats to claw back $3.5 billion that the federal government gave to California to build a bullet train between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 01:35 AM

Japan trade deficit highest in 5 yrs, hit by China doldrums

TOKYO - Japan reports its exports tumbled 8.4 per cent in January from a year earlier, as slowing Chinese growth pushed its monthly trade deficit to the highest level in nearly five years.

Exports to all of Asia dropped 13 per cent year-on-year, largely due to the 17 per cent plunge in shipments to China, where growth recently has fallen to its slowest pace in three decades.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 | 01:35 AM

Michigan Gov. Whitmer blocks immigrant detention plan

LANSING, Mich. - Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer blocked the sale of a former state prison that was proposed as the site of a privately operated federal immigration detention centre, drawing praise from immigrant rights activists and criticism Tuesday from a Republican lawmaker whose district stood to gain jobs.

Whitmer late last week stopped the proposed sale from proceeding, after plans for the facility had advanced in the fall under the administration of then-Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican. She said Virginia-based Immigration Centers of America would not promise to not detain adults who are separated from their children or other family members.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019 | 10:17 PM

Former Sessions spokeswoman joins CNN

NEW YORK - CNN has hired a former spokeswoman for Attorney General Jeff Sessions for work on its political desk as 2020 elections coverage heats up.

The network says Sarah Isgur will help manage teams in the field and co-ordinate use of stories between the network's television and digital arms. CNN said Tuesday she'll be one of several editors supervised by political director David Chalian and won't be in a policy-making role.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019 | 09:39 PM

B.C. budget includes child fund, climate plan, Indigenous revenue sharing

VICTORIA - The B.C. government maintained its focus on providing programs to help families cope financially in its latest budget Tuesday, following efforts a year ago to crack down on property speculation in the housing market, bringing in a child-care plan and eliminating health-care premiums.

Finance Minister Carole James said Tuesday her balanced budget offers a helping hand to people with a package of child benefits for families, loan relief for students, assistance increases for the poor, homeowner incentives to fight climate change and a long-term revenue sharing agreement with Indigenous Peoples.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019 | 07:09 PM

Governor signs measure to hike Illinois minimum wage to $15

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a measure Tuesday gradually hiking the statewide minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025, an early victory for the Democrat on the eve of his first annual budget proposal.

Fulfilling one of his top campaign promises just five weeks into the job, Pritzker declared that Illinois "welcomes working families, setting a high standard for workers' rights, economic opportunity and economic justice."

Tuesday, February 19, 2019 | 06:39 PM