HicksBiz Blog

Coronavirus Is an Economic Game Changer: HicksBiz guest column by financial commentator RON HIEBERT

This is the second of two guest columns for HicksBiz.com by my good friend Ron Hiebert - whose financial acumen I greatly respect. Ron retired from an illustrious career as a financial portfolio and wealth manager at Scotia Wealth in the fall of 2019. For many years, he hosted a hour-long Sunday morning investment show on CFCW 840 AM radio, called Making Money. He is the author of Wealth Building. Many years ago, the two of us co-authored an introduction to investing, called Making Money The Old-Fashioned Way.  Fortunately, retirement has not dulled Ron's  passion for all things financial.  He continues as a financial commentator on CFCW 840 AM radio, with two Making Money Minutes mini-editorials a day, at 8:05 a.m. and 5:05 p.m. Those thoughts are amplified in financial podcasts with retired radio legend Gord Whitehead at the website letsmakemoney.ca. In these turbulent financial times, I asked Ron if he would provide financial insight into just what’s happening out t ... Read the rest of entry »

Investing during a Pandemic - HicksBiz guest column by financial commentator RON HIEBERT

My good friend Ron Hiebert retired as a financial advisor from ScotiaWealth in the fall of 2019. Fortunately, he has not lost his passion for all things financial.  He continues as a financial commentator on CFCW 840 AM radio, with two Making Money Minutes mini-editorials a day, at 8:05 a.m. and 5:05 p.m. Those thoughts are amplified in financial podcasts with retired radio legend Gord Whitehead at the website letsmakemoney.ca. In these turbulent financial times, I asked Ron if he would provide financial insight into just what’s happening out there.  He happily responded with two guest columns for Hicksonbiz.com. Here’s the first. Investing In A Pandemic By RON HIEBERT The one question on every investors mind, at this point in late March, 2020, is when will the Coronavirus be contained? Knowing this will determine how long this bear market could last and when to start investing again. Best Case Scenario - The world mobilizes effectively against the Coronavirus as per the exam ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks on Biz: COVID-19's economic fallout in Alberta will make dire situation worse By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN, March 27, 2020

The ultrastructural morphology exhibited by the 2019 novel coronavirus which was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China, is seen in an illustration released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, on Jan. 29, 2020.supplied / Reuters I am, sadly, deeply pessimistic about Alberta’s future. It’s not about the COVID-19 virus. Public health measures backed by massive emergency government spending will hopefully spare us from the worst of the global pandemic. The fear is how much the virus will cost – i.e. the consequences of the grinding of the provincial, national and global economy to a near-halt. In Alberta, those costs are layered on top of the existing five-year collapse in the price of oil and gas prices, from $100 US a barrel to $50 US, and now a collapse of the collapse to $20 US. These body blows are on top of the relentless pressure to kill the oil and gas industry entirely. Alber ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks Weekly Dish: Drastic times, drastic measures, SkipTheDishes and Nara Chicken to the rescue By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN, March 24, 2020

Two styles of Nara Chicken - Korean fried and soy-garlic - delivered by SkipTheDishes. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS EDMONTON SUN Nara Chicken and Tonkatsu 8712 150 St. 780-540-0088 narachicken.com Home delivery by SkipTheDishes.com SkipTheDishes – reliability and speed – 4 of 5 Suns Nara Chicken and Tonkatsu take-out food – 3.5 of 5 Suns SkipTheDishes-delivered Nara dinner for two, excluding beverages, tips and $4.49 delivery fee: Basic $30, loaded $50. Drastic times call for drastic measures. Like using SkipTheDishes restaurant delivery for a Weekly Dish review! STORY CONTINUES BELOW While those SkipTheDishes TV ads aired during Oiler hockey games (remember those?) are well done and star Mad Men’s Jon Hamm as a comedian, the usual restaurant experience is still as much about ambiance and socializing as it is about food. But there we were on a late-afternoon Friday, seven of us from two houses, self-isolated together but for visits to the grocery stor ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks on Biz: U of A researchers hot on the trail of COVID-19 By GRAHAM HICKS, first published EDMONTON SUN, March 20, 2020

Dr. Lorne Tyrrell, founding director of the Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology in a lab on the University of Alberta campus. The Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology is involved in the critical work to help stop the spread of the novel Coronavirus on February 10, 2020. Photo by Shaughn Butts / Postmedia University of Alberta researchers, as they have done before, are hot on the trail of finding both a vaccine and a treatment for the COVID-19 virus. Distinguished virologist Dr. Lorne Tyrrell, famous for developing the drug lamivudine for treating Hepatitis B, is working with the equally well-known Dr. Michael Houghton, testing anti-viral compounds for possible effectiveness against COVID-19. In 2003-04, Dr. Houghton developed the leading vaccine candidate for the SARS outbreak. SARS – also of the coronavirus family — subsided before a vaccine needed to be mass-produced At least eight research groups at the University of Alberta are working around the clock on ways to stop this global pandem ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks' Weekly Dish: Royale Burgers - A temporarily unavailable near-perfect burger By Graham Hicks, first published EDMONTON SUN, March 17, 2020

The Royale Burgers' Big Cam burger, simple and elegant. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS / EDMONTON SUN Royale(TEMPORARILY CLOSED) 10145-104 St. 780-504-1180 royaleyeg.com Food: 4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Dinner for two, excluding beverages and tip:  Basic $25, loaded $50 As if -18C wasn’t bad enough, the wind was whistling down Jasper Avenue during the Friday, March 13 lunch hour. Restaurant after restaurant, while open at that point, were deserted. Downtown workers were on the cusp of realizing the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. One suspects closure, or take-out-only, will be obligatory for all restaurants. STORY CONTINUES BELOW Royale Burgers itself voluntarily closed its doors on March 16 because of the pandemic, until further notice. Restaurants were empty, until I turned the 104 Street corner and walked into the still-new Royale Burgers, with the intent of trying its Downtown Dining Week special (also since cancelled), being R ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks Weekly Dish: Underwhelmed by Biera By Graham Hicks first published Edmonton Sun, March 10, 2020

Biera's Korean style ribs were not exceptional. GRAHAM HICKS/Edmonton SunEdmonton Biera 9570 76 Ave. NW 587-525-8589 biera.ca  (reservations) Wed. to Sat. 11:30 am to 11 pm Sun. 11:30 am to 4 pm Mon. closed Tues. 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Food: 3 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 3.5 of 5 Suns Dinner for two, excluding beverages and tip:  Basic $60, loaded $90 Was it the particular evening? An off night? Was Biera executive chef Christine Sandford absent? Did we simply order the wrong dishes? How was it possible for our party of four to be so underwhelmed at Biera? This, after all, is a restaurant consistently listed on reputable Top 5 dining out lists (reputable meaning not open to voter manipulation, not being “bought”). STORY CONTINUES BELOW In Avenue Magazine’s just-published Best Restaurants 2020 edition, an independent judging panel named Biera as Edmonton’s Best Overall Restaurant. For years, Chef Sandford has been devising ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks on Biz: Oilers playoff anticipation brings March madness to Edmonton By Graham Hicks first published Edmonton Sun, March 9, 2020

Edmonton Oilers' Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) celebrates a goal on Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck (37) at Rogers Place on Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020.Ian Kucerak / Postmedia It’s March, there’s still 13 games left in the regular season.  The Oilers aren’t guaranteed a playoff spot yet. But the city is already going playoff crazy. At last week’s Oiler away games, the bars, lounges  and sports pubs were full, even though it was mid-week, even though it’s the quietest time of the year for the hospitality business. Sales are piling up for Oiler jerseys, car flags, foam fingers, ball caps. The excitement grows. Because it’s apparent to hockey-savvy Edmontonians that the Oilers are fast becoming one of the league’s better teams – with two leading scorers, two dangerous forward lines, depth up front, a fast-maturing defensive corps and two goalies shooting out the lights. STORY CONTINUES BELOW The anticipation ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks Weekly Dish: No fighting over this food By Graham Hicks first published Edmonton Sun, March 3, 2020

A Filipino Kamayan/boodle fight feast is a treat for the eyes and the stomach. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS / EDMONTON SUN Kamayan/Boodle Fight Festival Filistix Restaurant (special occasion) 10621 100 Ave. 780-716-4708 11 am – 2 pm, 4 pm to 9 pm (seven days a week, closed Sunday evenings) filistix.ca Kamayan Feast food: 4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Festival dinner: $57 per ticket When is a fight not a fight? When it’s a boodle fight feast. This rural Filipino tradition has been around for a very long time. Whenever an occasion so warranted, large, flat banana leaves would cover the tables, serving as a combination serving platters/tablecloths. STORY CONTINUES BELOW For what was originally known as a Kamayan feast, food (other than soup) would be dished on to the table centre.  Guests on either side helped themselves, using their hands and rice as utensils. The tradition evolved into a handy way of feeding the troops, somehow tak ... Read the rest of entry »

Hicks Weekly Dish: No fighting over this food By Graham Hicks first published Edmonton Sun, March 3, 2020

A Filipino Kamayan/boodle fight feast is a treat for the eyes and the stomach. Photos by GRAHAM HICKS / EDMONTON SUN Kamayan/Boodle Fight Festival Filistix Restaurant (special occasion) 10621 100 Ave. 780-716-4708 11 am – 2 pm, 4 pm to 9 pm (seven days a week, closed Sunday evenings) filistix.ca Kamayan Feast food: 4 of 5 Suns Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns Service: 4 of 5 Suns Festival dinner: $57 per ticket When is a fight not a fight? When it’s a boodle fight feast. This rural Filipino tradition has been around for a very long time. Whenever an occasion so warranted, large, flat banana leaves would cover the tables, serving as a combination serving platters/tablecloths. STORY CONTINUES BELOW For what was originally known as a Kamayan feast, food (other than soup) would be dished on to the table centre.  Guests on either side helped themselves, using their hands and rice as utensils. The tradition evolved into a handy way of feeding the troops, somehow tak ... Read the rest of entry »
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