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Home > Learning Center > Glossaries > Economic & Finance Terms Glossary
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Economic, Finance & Revenue Canada Explained!
 
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Confused By The Economic, Finance & Revenue Canada Terms and Definitions? Get The Answers Here!
 
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S
Safeguard - Savings Rate - Schedule I Bank - Schedule II Bank - Schedule III Bank - Scientific Research and Experimental Development Investment Tax Credit - Seasonal Adjustment - Secondary Market - Secured Loan - Securities Commission - Securities Dealer - Security - Securitization - Segregated Fund - Self-Dealing - Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) - Service Charge/Fee - Short-Term Interest Rate - Small Business Deduction - Social Assistance - Social Security - Sovereign Market - Spare Capacity - Special Import Measures Act - Special Operating Agency - Spouse's Allowance - Stock - Stock Exchange - Stop Payment - Strategic Alliance - Structural Change - Structural Policy - Structural Unemployment - Subsidiary - Subsidy - Surplus - Surtax - Sustainable Development - Swap
 
Safeguard
The term refers to action in the form of additional duties or import quotas on fairly traded imports that cause or threaten to cause serious injury to domestic producers. Article XIX of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade – Emergency Action on Imports of Particular Products – permits World Trade Organization (WTO) members to take such action.
 
Savings Rate
Personal savings expressed as a percentage of disposable income - the income remaining after income taxes and payroll taxes are accounted for.
 
Schedule I Bank
A federally regulated Canadian bank.
Schedule II Bank
A federally regulated foreign bank.
Schedule III Bank
A federally regulated foreign bank branch (lending and full service).
 
Scientific Research and Experimental Development Investment (SR&ED) Tax Credit
SR&ED tax credits may be used to reduce federal income taxes otherwise payable or to obtain cash refunds. There are currently two rates of tax credit for SR&ED: a general rate of 20 per cent, and an enhanced rate of 35 per cent for certain small businesses. For more information, visit the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Program Web page.
 
Seasonal Adjustment
A statistical technique used to remove the effect of normal seasonal fluctuations in data so underlying trends become more evident. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate smoothes out the changes in unemployment due to the typical seasonal hiring in the summer and layoffs in the winter for workers in industries such as agriculture and construction.
 
Secondary Market
Market where securities are bought and sold subsequently to original issuance, which took place in the primary market. For more information, visit the Department of Finance Government of Canada Securities Web page.
 
Secured Loan
A lump sum of funds for which the customer must provide collateral or a loan that is backed by collateral.
 
Securities Commission
A government agency that administers provincial securities legislation. Examples include the Alberta Securities Commission and the Ontario Securities Commission.
 
Securities Dealer
A firm that trades securities for its clients and offers other investment services. Also known as an investment dealer or brokerage house.
 
Security
A transferable certificate of ownership of an investment product such as a note, bond, stock, futures contract or option. A security can also be defined as "property, which is pledged as collateral for a loan or other credit, and subject to seizure in the event of default."
 
Securitization
Most commonly refers to the conversion of various sorts of loans into marketable securities, for subsequent sale to investors, by packaging the loans into pools.
 
Segregated Fund
A pooled investment fund, much like a mutual fund, that is established by an insurance company and segregated from the general capital of the company. Its chief distinction from a mutual fund is its guarantee that, regardless of fund performance, at least a minimum percentage of the investor's payments into the fund will be returned when the fund matures. The Insurance Companies Act governs segregated funds.
 
Self-Dealing
Refers to transactions between a financial institution and persons who are in positions of influence over, or in control of, the institution. A key part of the 1992 financial sector reform was the implementation of comprehensive controls on such transactions.
 
Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO)
An organization that has been given the responsibility and authority to regulate its members. Examples include the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Investment Dealers Association.
 
Service Charge/Fee
Fees established by financial institutions for certain transactions.
 
Short-Term Interest Rate
Interest rate applying on money lent for a period of less than three years.
See also long-term interest rate.
 
Small Business Deduction (SBD)
Canadian-controlled private corporations (CCPCs) are eligible for a tax rate reduction known as the SBD. This deduction lowers the basic federal tax rate on the first $200,000 of active business income of CCPCs from 28 per cent to 12 per cent. CCPCs with more than $15 million of taxable capital employed in Canada are not eligible for the SBD while CCPCs with between $10 million and $15 million of taxable capital employed in Canada have reduced access to it. For more information on small business taxation, visit the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency Small Business page.
 
Social Assistance
Payments made to Canadians on the basis of need by provinces and municipalities, supported by federal contributions provided under the Canada Social Transfer.
 
Social Security
Society's commitment to take care of its most vulnerable citizens – e.g. people without work, lone parents with limited means struggling to raise a family, children in poverty, and people who face barriers to employment due to disability or chronic illness. The "social safety net" comprises a wide range of federal, provincial and joint federal-provincial programs. Click on the following programs to learn more about
Old Age Security - http://www.hrdc-drhc.gc.ca/isp/common/oastoc_e.shtml, the
Guaranteed Income Supplement - http://www.hrdc-drhc.gc.ca/isp/oas/ispb184.shtml, the
Canada Pension Plan - http://www.hrdc-drhc.gc.ca/isp/common/cpptoc_e.shtml,
employment insurance - http://www.drhc.gc.ca/ae-ei/employment_insurance.shtml, the
Canada Child Tax Benefit - http://www.ccra-adrc.gc.ca/benefits/childbenefit-e.html and the
National Child Benefit - http://socialunion.gc.ca/ncb_e.html
 
Sovereign Market
Market for the debt issued by a government.
 
Spare Capacity or Excess Capacity
The amount of available plant and equipment not in use. When producers have spare capacity, they tend to reduce prices or minimize price increases in order to increase sales. Thus, the greater the spare capacity, the greater the downward pressure on the inflation rate.
 
Special Import Measures Act (SIMA)
The Canadian legislation that provides for the imposition of anti-dumping and countervailing duties when dumped or subsidized goods injure Canadian producers. Revenue Canada investigates whether there has been dumping or subsidization of goods resulting in a reasonable indication of injury, retardation or a threat of injury. The Canadian International Trade Tribunal conducts the definitive inquiry into the question of injury.
 
Special Operating Agency (SOA)
A federal government organization that has increased management flexibility in order to improve performance. Objectives include better overall management, improved operational results and greater focus on demand.
 
Spouse's Allowance
A non-taxable monthly benefit paid to low-income individuals aged 60 to 64 who are spouses of Old Age Security pensioners or are widow(er)s. Benefits are fully phased out by about $16,000 of net income for widowed recipients and about $26,800 of net family income for spouses of seniors. For more information, visit Human Resources Development Canada's Spouse's Allowance Web page.
 
Stock
Unit of ownership in a company, which is bought and sold on a stock exchange. The terms "share" and "stock" are often used interchangeably.
 
Stock Exchange
The marketplace where stocks are traded. Examples are the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Canadian Venture Exchange.
 
Stop Payment
A service which enables you to request a 'stop' on any cheque or other pre-authorized payment, as long as the funds have not yet been disbursed. For example, you might request a stop payment on a post-dated cheque if you no longer need the product or service for which that cheque was initially written.
 
Strategic Alliance
Alliance between companies, primarily for the purpose of achieving cost efficiencies, and to allow them to become more competitive in the face of rapid changes and pressures in the market.
 
Structural Change
A basic and permanent change in the way the economy generates employment and wealth. Within a country, this may include changes in the relative importance of industries, in the economic strength of regions, or in the mix of skills and occupations in the labour force. The government may assist the economy in adapting to structural changes by altering its policies. Technological advancement, changes in consumer behaviour, the emergence of new competitors and trade liberalization cause structural changes in the economy.
 
Structural Policy
A policy that addresses permanent market conditions. While fiscal and monetary policies smooth out cyclical swings in economic activity, structural policies change the conditions under which the economy operates. Examples include tax incentives, labour market policies and social programs. Structural policies include those relating to inter-provincial and international trade, training, regulations (such as the rules governing the financial sector), tax policies, and support for technical research and development.
See also fiscal policy; monetary policy.
 
Structural Unemployment
Where workers are unable to fill available jobs because they lack the necessary skills, do not live where jobs are available or are unwilling to work at the wage rate offered in the market.
 
Subsidiary
A company that is legally controlled by another company.
 
Subsidy
An economic benefit granted by a government to producers of goods, often to strengthen their competitive position. The subsidy may be direct (i.e. a cash grant) or indirect (e.g. low-interest export credits guaranteed by a government agency).
 
Surplus
The amount by which government revenue exceeds budgetary spending in any given year.
 
Surtax
  1. Surtax on imports is a tariff in addition to an existing tariff, often used as an emergency safeguard measure.
  2. Surtax on income is an additional tax levied as a percentage of income tax. Corporations may pay surtaxes in addition to their base amount of federal tax. The surtax on individuals was eliminated on January 1, 2001 as part of the government's five-year tax reduction plan.
Sustainable Development
Long-term sustainable economic growth based on environmentally sound policies and practices. Environmental degradation at the local, national and international level undermines prospects for continued economic development. Ultimately, sustainable development means meeting the needs of the present without compromising our ability to meet the needs of future generations. Sustainable development requires that public policy account for economic, environmental and social objectives at the earliest possible stages of policy development.
 
Swap
An agreement that exchanges one type of return for another (e.g. a fixed for a floating rate of interest).
 
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