iinta Investing

Fred Lazar

One of Canada’s leading experts in Economics, Fred Lazar, has been an Associate Professor at York University since September 1972. This role includes the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies, as well as the Schulich School of Business.

Prior to taking this role he was a researcher for Prices and Incomes Commission from 1970-71.

Lazar has a Bachelor of Commerce in Economics from the University of Toronto (1965-69); he furthermore has a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy from Harvard University for Economics (1970-78).

Though he has done far more than teach throughout the span of his career. Lazar worked as a government advisor through the 1970s-80s. Most notably, while working in the Prime Minister’s office in 1982, he was involved with economics and policy work that included trade negotiations, pension reforms, industrial policy, taxation, competition policy and deregulation.

Consulting with a wide assortment of companies has also been a prominent aspect of his career. Some of these areas include the auto industry, financial services, resource industries and cultural industries.

He’s also had the pleasure of being the Director for several companies since 2015: Air North, Interknowlogy, and Metis Infinity Investment. These companies range from a Yukon-based airline, a California-based software company, and the economic development branch of the Metis Nation of Ontario.


He is strongly involved with First Nations issues across Canada. Currently, he is an expert witness in three cases about land claim disputes by First Nations people.

Lazar’s reasoning for studying economics was that he had no interest in medicine, law or science. Subsequently, he chose Commerce and Finance in order to avoid taking English classes — ironically, his career has involved a great deal of writing and communication.

The area of economics is intriguing to Lazar because it covers such a broad spectrum of topics.

“Almost every major issue during the past 30-40 years has required some degree of economic analysis,” he writes. “I have become increasingly more interested in finding the flaws in the mainstream economic theories.”

Becoming a professor hadn’t been his intention initially, however, when the job posting came to light, Lazar decided to apply as he needed the money. He was still in grad school completing his thesis at this stage.

There are two primary reasons he has remained in academia the past five decades. One is because he has the freedom to work in all the aforementioned areas, which also allows him to continually learn. The second reason is the freedom permitted him the ability to remain present in his children’s lives as they grew up.

Over the past five decades he has noticed that his students general age range hasn’t changed, which has allowed him to see how each generation adapts and uses technology. It’s also given him the ability to see how their thought processes have changed over the years. Though, interacting with and learning from his students has been his favorite aspect.

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