The Bank of Canada left the overnight rate at 1.00% at its meeting yesterday, as was universally expected. This is great news for anyone with a variable rate mortgage, or any product tied to prime like a line of credit or student loan.
More notable was the Bank’s assessment of the global outlook, which was deemed as having deteriorated relative to April. The weakening in the global environment was cited as a factor restraining growth in Canada; however, the Bank views the domestic economy as continuing to grow at a moderate pace. These factors resulted in the Bank downgrading its 2012 growth forecast to 2.1% from 2.4%. The Bank forecasted that the economy will grow at a faster 2.3% in 2013 (albeit a tad slower than April’s 2.4% forecast) and 2.5% in 2014 (higher than April’s forecast of 2.2%).
The tone indicated that there may be need to reduce stimulus in order for the Bank of Canada to maintain the 2% target rate for inflation, but most economists don’t expect that to happen till 2013. More great news for variable rate mortgages, and anyone with debt tied to prime. Yields are trending down so there may be some room for some short term decreases to fixed rates. Sit tight and we’ll see!
Much of this is due to the slowing economic growth in Canada, the U.S. and China, and the unrelenting economic problems in Europe. These helped to handcuff our central bank. It has been looking to raise rates in an effort to slowdown the growth of household debt in Canada. But the Bank of Canada did get some relief with Ottawa’s imposition of new lending rules for high-ratio mortgages and new mortgage qualification limits. The regulatory moves amount to a de facto interest rate increase in the housing sector and, anecdotally at least, appear to be having the desired, cooling effect.
1 Yr – 2.39%
3 Yr. – 2.69%
5 Yr. – 2.94%
VRM – 2.79%
Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each week for you to enjoy. Please remember to the Spring Realty Insider Club list to receive new blog post notifications, featured properties and insider access to Toronto’s hottest new developments right to your inbox. Find us on Facebook and Twitter too!