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Sharp

Sharp has 2 articles published.

Audi A8 – Valiant in Valencia

in Auto/The Tech Slant by
Audi A8

Taking the Audi A8 out for a prance in Spain

*When the Audi A8 last rebooted, people were hardly in an uproar over the changes. No, Audi plays it safe with their big limo, a flagship that necessarily must embody all the aspirations implicit in the marque’s “russian dolls” approach to carmaking.

The car is especially handsome under Valencia’s ochre, wintertime sun— even the tourists are straining for a look at the handsome car as it cruise the wide boulevard near L’Oceanogràfic, a stunning oceanarium situated in the east of the city of Valencia, Spain, where different marine habitats are represented. Designed by the architect Félix Candela and the structural engineers Alberto Domingo and Carlos Lázaro, the structure echoes the curving grace of the A8, casting an impressionistic reflection on my press car’s highly reflective hood in the afternoon light.

AUdi A8 in Valencia
PHOTO CREDIT: SHARPMAGAZINEME.COM

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Why Canada’s Real Estate Market Is Becoming Too Big to Fail

in The Money Slant by
Canada Real Estate Market Too Big to Fail

TORONTO — It was all about to come crashing down.

That’s the conclusion one would draw from reading the Canadian business press in the spring of 2017, which, after giddily cheering the housing boom, now heralded an inevitable bust.

A favourite theme: Canadians appeared to have lost their minds over houses the same way their American cousins had ahead of the financial crisis of 2008. Nondescript detached homes in hard-luck Hamilton, Ontario, were selling for $1 million. In Vancouver, prices had climbed 50 per cent in only three years heading into 2016 — great if you happened to own property, not so great if you didn’t. Institutions such as the Bank of Canada had started talking in more detail about the perils of debt. To keep up with those surging house prices, Canadians had mortgaged their futures like never before, prompting the central bank to worry about financial stability.

There was another particularly bad omen. Home Capital, a smallish mortgage lender, had cast a dark shadow over the real estate market. A couple of years earlier, the firm realized that a few dozen brokers it worked with had been filing false mortgage applications. Home Capital insisted the issue was minor, but its executives couldn’t make the problem go away. If you saw The Big Short, you know that rampant fraud was at the heart of the U.S. housing collapse in 2006 and 2007, and alarm bells were sounding.

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