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2180 Steeles Avenue West,
Suite 204, Concord,
ON, L4K 2Z5

Phone:     905-761-7001
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6 March 2019

Bank of Canada doesn’t raise its interest rate and now a rate cut possibility appears

Today, the Bank of Canada kept its key lending rate unchanged at 1.75% once again, and said the moment of future rate increases is highly uncertain.

The BoC pointed to the economic slowdown which started at the end of 2018 and turned out to be slightly worse than anticipated with a stronger than expected slowdown in the oil sector. Weak real estate market and lower consumer spending were also among the factors causing such a gloom report.

"The global economic prospects could be supported by the end of trade conflicts," – the BoC noted.

"As the uncertainty about the timing of future rate hikes is very high, the Bank will be monitoring thoroughly all the changes in household spending, oil markets, and global trade policy."

The central bank meets eight times a year to determine its interest rate, which affects the rates that Canadians receive when getting savings accounts and mortgages.

According to James Laird, president of CanWise Financial, today’s announcement means the Bank’s concern over the economy may outpace its desire to raise rates for some time.

"A more modest rate outlook will push down bond yields, leading to fixed rates declines during the spring market”, - he added.

"In other words, it’s good news for those first-time homebuyers, who want to enter the real estate market this spring."

TD Bank economist Brian DePratto shares this opinion, saying that unless there is a significant economic rebound in the middle of the year, we’ll see no rate hikes in 2019.

"The main idea today is that economy needs more stimulus than earlier expected”, - DePratto said.

The next rate meeting will be on April 24, 2019.

According to Bloomberg’s recent poll, most economists predict no changes next time, while an overnight index swaps shows an 8% chance of a rate decline. In case it’s true, it will be the first rate cut since 2015.

Currency traders also believe a rate drop is possible.

Meanwhile, the Canadian dollar lost almost half a cent to 74.40 cents US. When interest rates go up, the loonie rises in value, when the rate is low, the currency also goes down.

 

 

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