The WestJet-Onex deal and Ford's class-action settlement: CBC's Marketplace consumer cheat sheet

Miss something this week? Don’t panic. CBC’s Marketplace rounds up the consumer and health news you need.

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Could the West Jet-Onex deal ruin your travel plans?

Will ticket prices go up? Destinations change? Experts say in the short term, probably not. WestJet will still have to compete with Air Canada and its other rivals on price. But Onex is known to buy smaller companies and boost their value through cost-cutting and structural reorganization, so some say changes could be on the horizon. It’s just too soon to say what those changes could be.

Settlement coming for Ford Fiesta and Focus owners

If you own a Ford Focus or Fiesta you might be looking at a partial refund thanks to a class-action settlement over the cars’ problem-plagued dual-action transmissions. Halifax resident Jordan Bonaparte was the first to notice his car jerking forward in traffic and other issues with the transmission. But, he’s not the only one. Transport Canada says it was the most complained about issue in the past 10 years.

Halifax resident Jordan Bonaparte was the first Ford owner to speak out about his 2013 Focus and its erratic behaviour in October 2016. (Yvonne Colbert/CBC)

WhatsApp’s security breach and how to protect yourself

Have you updated WhatsApp app in the last couple of days? You might want to. The company says that’s the best way to protect yourself from a security breach that allows hackers to spy on your phone. It’s kind of like our 2017 investigation, where we developed a fake app to show you what information can be collected on unsuspecting users. The results might surprise you.

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Allstate whistleblower facing $700K lawsuit from company

Mehda Joshi says she was wrongfully terminated after she publicly criticized the insurance giant about a practice she calls discriminatory. She says they wanted to deny insurance to visible minority drivers in Brampton, Ont. But Allstate is hitting back with a counterclaim that could cost her more than $700,000.

Medha Joshi was fired by Allstate Insurance Canada in October. She alleges her termination came after she pushed against a policy she says was discriminatory. (Michael Cole/CBC)

180 countries agree to sharply reduce plastic in oceans

Most of the world’s countries just took a big step toward reducing the amount of plastic trash that ends up in the ocean. The legally binding agreement will put new, tighter regulations on global trade in plastic waste. We took a look at the most outrageously over-packaged products.

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What else is going on?

How to fashion greener jeans and T-shirts. Experts say changing the materials used to make clothes is crucial to changing the fashion industry’s impact on the environment.

Industry worries new Alberta government will cancel solar power rebates. There could be dark clouds moving in for solar energy in Alberta.

Waiting for the economic impact as more Canadians consider going car-free (Analysis). There is early evidence of a big transformation underway for the transportation industry: The move to abandon car ownership altogether.

Ontario’s highest court rules doctors must give referrals for services they oppose. The requirement is part of a policy surrounding assisted dying and abortion.

The week in recalls

These Fisher-Price Newborn Rock ‘n Play Sleepers do not meet the requirements for bassinets in Canada and have been recalled due to deaths in the U.S.; These mugs may crack when hot liquid is poured into them, posing a burn hazard; Some Arm’s Reach cribs and bassinets may be unsafe; This Béaba Babycook NEO Steamer/Blender glass bowl may break, posing a laceration hazard.

What should we investigate next?

Our television season has wrapped, but you can catch up on previous Marketplace investigations on CBC Gem. From scams and misleading marketing claims, to products and services that could put your health at risk, we are working on bringing you brand new investigations this fall. If you have a story you think we should be covering, email us at

-The Marketplace team

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