Money markets are betting Bank of Canada might make ‘micro rate cut’ next week

[Financial Post - January 12, 2021] TORONTO — Money markets see an increased chance of the Bank of Canada cutting interest rates closer to zero, as tightening economic restrictions to contain a second wave of COVID-19 cases offset optimism that activity will rebound later this year. Interest rates were thought to have hit rock bottom in Canada after they were slashed 150 basis points last March to a record low of 0.25 per cent, a level the Bank of Canada considered [...]

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Canada 2021 Housing Forecasts Call For A Boom … Or The Worst Crash in 40 Years

[Huff Post - January 2, 2021] Amid an unpredictable pandemic, forecasts for the housing market are pretty much all over the map. This could be the toughest year in living memory to make predictions about the economy ― especially the housing market. Amid the worst economic slowdown in decades, home sales and prices soared in many Canadian cities in 2020, along with housing markets in many other countries. The average house price in Canada has shot up by 13.8 per cent   over [...]

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Paying down debt Canadians’ top financial goal in 2020: poll

[Financial Post - December 31, 2020] CIBC survey found many people took on more debt this year to cover day-to-day expenses and make up for lost income. TORONTO — Paying down debt is the No. 1 financial priority of Canadians heading into the new year, according to a new survey that found many people took on more debt this year to cover day-to-day expenses and make up for lost income. The annual CIBC online poll said tackling debt has remained unchanged as [...]

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Prices surge for B.C. recreational properties as people ‘re-evaluate their lifestyle’

[Vancouver Sun - December 8, 2020] There is a surge in interest and prices for recreational properties across B.C., especially Whistler, Kimberley and Cranbrook. Vancouver landscape architect Paul Sangha has long created gorgeous gardens and outdoor spaces for homes in the city, but this year, he is juggling a dramatic switch for his services in far-flung, recreational properties. It’s not just at Whistler, he said. “That, we would traditionally get. But now it’s jumped to Bowen Island and Pemberton, and then also [...]

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Bank of Canada doesn’t see housing bubble but it’s watching out, deputy governor says

[Yahoo Finance - December 10, 2020] TORONTO — A deputy governor of the Bank of Canada says the central bank is monitoring rising housing prices, as it keeps interest rates low to help borrowers cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. “Making sure we're not creating a bubble is very important here. And so we're keeping an eye on that,” said Paul Beaudry in a Thursday in a wide-ranging question-and-answer session for the Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce, the Fredericton Chamber of Commerce, [...]

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Bank of Canada stands pat in year’s final rate decision, balancing COVID-19 risks with vaccine optimism

[Globe and Mail - December 9, 2020] The Bank of Canada stood pat on monetary policy in its final scheduled interest-rate decision of an eventful 2020, balancing the near-term economic risks from the second wave of the COVID-19 virus with the arrival of vaccines to alleviate the pandemic. The central bank announced Wednesday morning that its governing council had opted to leave the bank’s key policy rate unchanged at a record-low 0.25 per cent, where it has sat since a series [...]

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Liberals planning national foreign buyers tax in bid to lower housing prices

[Financial Post - December 2, 2020] In this week's fiscal update, government says plan will benefit first-time homebuyers and put more homes on the market. TORONTO — The Liberal government says it will take steps over the next year to tax foreign homeowners who live outside of Canada as part of a plan to lower housing prices. It’s an idea that has been growing in popularity over the last few years in provinces such as British Columbia, Ontario and Prince Edward Island, [...]

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How long can interest rates stay low once a vaccine arrives?

[CBC - November 10. 2020] Jubilation over the good news about a vaccine has taken markets by storm. Shortly after the news broke on Monday that the U.S. drugmaker Pfizer had a COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough that appeared 90 per cent effective, the Dow Jones industrial average soared more than 1,500 points, , a rise of more than four per cent. The Toronto market also took off. Canadian oil and gas shares shot up on the prospect of people climbing back into cars for road trips [...]

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Bank of Canada phasing out 3 programs set up in early days of COVID-19 to provide emergency liquidity

[CBC - October 16, 2020] Demand has waned in recent weeks, a sign things may be getting back to normal. The Bank of Canada is winding down three emergency programs it set up to provide support to financial institutions during the early days of the pandemic, as demand for all three programs is falling now that things are getting back to normal. In a news release late Thursday, the central bank said it will close two programs known as the Bankers' Acceptance Purchase Facility, or BAPF, and the [...]

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Buying a home in Canada is suddenly substantially more affordable — but there’s a catch

[Financial Post - October 1, 2020] Don’t expect the income boost we’ve been seeing to last Buying a home in Canada hasn’t been this affordable in four years, but there’s a catch — actually more than one. According to RBC Economics' Housing Affordability Measure out this week the proportion of income Canadians need to meet housing costs (mortgage, taxes, utilities) fell 3.3 percentage points to 47.3% in the second quarter, the most affordable since 2016. Substantial improvements were evident from coast to coast with [...]

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