Canadian home sales climb higher in May
National home sales rose 3.6% from April to May. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity came in 2.6% below levels in May 2012. The number of newly listed homes was up 1.9% from April to May. The Canadian housing market remains firmly in balanced territory. "Until recently, mixed sales trends across the country taken together had resulted consistently in a stable national trend," said Gregory Klump, CREA's Chief Economist. "The difference in May was that sales improved in so many markets at the same time."
CREA Updates Resale Housing Forecast
National sales activity is now forecast to reach 443,400 units in 2013. This represents a decline of 2.5 per cent from 454,573 sales in 2012, and marks an upward revision from the previous forecast decline of 2.9 per cent. Alberta and Prince Edward Island are the only provinces where sales are projected to post an annual increase in 2013, with declines in other provinces reflecting the impact of more restrictive mortgage lending rules and guidelines.
The Year Ahead: Canadian Investors Optimistic About Personal Investments, Domestic Economy
Despite reports of a cooling Canadian housing market and a slow-growth U.S. economy, a TD study reveals that Canadian investors have great expectations for the next 12 months. According to the first TD Investor Insights Index, which will serve as a benchmark for future reports on investor sentiment, Canadian investors are optimistic about both their personal investment portfolio and the Canadian economy. The study served as a barometer for general investor outlook and looked at external factors influencing Canadians' investment decisions and their confidence in domestic and foreign markets.
The Gen Y Reality: Expensive to Live, Easy to Spend, Struggle to Save
TD research finds high cost of education, lower salaries and high debt load biggest barriers to saving for 20-somethings today compared to 40 years ago.
Mixed Performance in Global Housing Markets Persists: Scotiabank
The report finds that in the majority of national markets, housing conditions are fairly steady, and average home prices relatively flat. However, in a number of countries, primarily in emerging Asia and Latin America but also in the United States, home prices are again accelerating, supported by relatively stronger domestic economic conditions. In others, namely the struggling nations of southern Europe, deep price declines are continuing.
BMO Summer Spending Survey: Canadians Plan to Spend Nearly $4,000 on Entertainment, Dining Out and Impulse Purchases
Spending Up: One-quarter expect to increase their summer expenditures; however, 'summer of thrift' mindset remains for many. Impulse spending will account for another $123 per week on average, or $1,599 over the course of the summer
Paradigm Quest Inc. recognized as one of Canada's Fastest-Growing Companies
Paradigm recognized in the 25th annual PROFIT 500 ranking of Canada's Fastest-Growing Companies by PROFIT Magazine
Bank of Canada maintains overnight rate target at 1 per cent
In Canada, recent economic indicators suggest that growth in the first quarter was stronger than the Bank projected in April. Growth in total household credit is slowing and the Bank continues to expect that the household debt-to-income ratio will stabilize near current levels.
Street Capital Financial Corporation receives CMHC approvals to securitize mortgages
"This is an important milestone for Street Capital," said Allan Silber, Chairman and CEO of Counsel. "These approvals will enable the business to access an additional source of liquidity for the mortgages it originates and renews, and to be an approved seller into the CMB program."
Industrial Alliance Introduces Universal Life Insurance with Adjustable Premiums Tied to Long-Term Interest Rates
An innovative new product, Trend is an advantageous alternative to the permanent life insurance products on the market today. It provides clients with the protection they need, all the while saving them money. Policyholders benefit from a guaranteed premium discount for the first 10 years of the contract, and they can save even more starting year 11 if long-term interest rates are higher at that time.
Close to 300,000 jobs remain unfilled in Q1
"As the economy has improved and unemployment has come down, companies, particularly smaller companies, have struggled to fill open jobs," said Ted Mallett, CFIB's chief economist and vice-president. "While unfilled jobs may seem harmless, they represent missed opportunity for business and the economy."
Housing Market Conditions Improve on the South Coast
The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 6,904 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during April, up 1.9 per cent from March on a seasonally adjusted basis, but down 2.2 per cent compared to April 2012. Total sales dollar volume declined 3 per cent to $3.65 billion. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $528,507, down 0.8 per cent from a year ago.
BMO Psychology of House Hunting Report: Home Buyers Visited an Average of 10 Homes Before Buying
Canadians are more concerned about finding something wrong with the home post-purchase than a potential drop in real estate prices. Love at first sight: 80 per cent of likely buyers know if the home is right as soon as they cross the threshold
CMHC 2012 annual report released
CMHC today released its 2012 Annual Report, highlighting the Corporation’s role in contributing to a stable housing finance system and in promoting an efficient housing market. “Providing a detailed examination of CMHC’s performance in 2012, this report includes in-depth information on CMHC’s mortgage loan insurance and securitization activities that have promoted an accessible, competitive and stable mortgage market throughout Canada,” said Karen Kinsley
Canadians struggling to stick to their 'financial diets': PwC
Survey shows that despite a resolve to pay down debt, consumers are not following through
Are Canadians 'reno ready'? Majority of homeowners do not consider insurance implications before renovating
It's spring, and we're in the midst of prime house hunting season. For many homeowners who want a change without a big move, they may decide to give their home a facelift instead of moving. But research from TD Insurance has found that the majority of homeowners are not considering the insurance implications of their renovations: only 6% checked their policy to ensure they were covered during the upgrades and just 16% asked their insurer if their policy needed an update following their last renovation.
Income Tax Refund Study: More Than One-Third of Canadians Plan on Paying Down Debt
Eight-in-ten Canadians expect to receive a tax refund this year. Thirty-seven per cent will use their refund to pay down debt; 20 per cent plan to invest their refund
BMO Chief Economist Predicts Canadian Dollar to Stay Close to Parity Through 2013, but Fall to 90 Cents U.S. in Five Years
In the short term, slightly softer Canadian dollar to stay close to parity as improved U.S. momentum spreads north
RBC Investor & Treasury Services Survey: Canadian pensions post solid gains in first quarter
Resurgent global stock markets continued to lift pension assets in the first quarter, according to the latest survey from RBC Investor Services, part of Royal Bank of Canada's (RY on TSX and NYSE) Investor & Treasury Services segment.
Canadian home sales rise in March
National home sales rose 2.4% from February to March. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity came in 15.3% below levels in March 2012. The number of newly listed homes was up 3.2% from February to March. The Canadian housing market remains firmly in balanced territory.
Bank of Canada maintains overnight rate target at 1 per cent
The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 1/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 3/4 per cent. Following a weak second half of 2012, growth in Canada is projected to regain some momentum through 2013 as net exports pick up and business investment returns to more solid growth. Consumer spending is expected to grow at a moderate pace over the projection horizon, while residential investment declines further from historically high levels.
Canadian commercial property market heading into another strong year: CIBC
Canada's commercial real estate sector and REIT investment market appear set to outperform for a fifth-straight year, according to CIBC World Markets Inc. "All of the fundamentals seem to be supporting [the] continuation of [an] extended recovery" from the market lows of 2008, says Allan Kimberley, Vice-Chairman, Real Estate Investment Banking at CIBC.
BMO Home Buying Report: First-Time Buyers Expect to Spend $300,000 on First Home with an Average Down Payment of $48,000
On average, first-time buyers expect it will take them 20 years to pay off their mortgage. Report shows first-timers prefer a fixed rate to a variable rate mortgage by more than a 2:1 ratio. Report reveals how recent changes to Canadian mortgage rules have affected the timeline to buy for first-time buyers
Canada's housing market begins the year with slightly positive price trends
Unprecedented combination of low interest rates, flattening house prices and strengthening economy provide support to Canada's housing market says Royal LePage Survey
First-time buyers poised to stand tall even as Canadian home purchase intentions fall: RBC Poll
Cautious mood, less urgency among Canadian homebuyers, but majority still consider homeownership a good investment. Four-in-10 Canadians (40 per cent) planning to enter the housing market over the next two years will be first-time homebuyers, according to the 20th Annual RBC Home Ownership Poll.
Canadian January GDP stronger than expected
January 2013 GDP rose by a slightly stronger than expected 0.2% in the month, which offset the 0.2% decline recorded in December 2012. Strength in the month was led by goods-producing industries rising 0.4% and helped by manufacturing output rising 1.2%.
Canadian consumer confidence results mixed to begin 2013
One in four (25%) feel they will be better off financially a year from now. Conversely, 13% feel they will be worse off. In the last quarter of 2012, this split was 24%-12%. Those living on the Prairies, men, and those between the ages of 25 and 44 are most likely to feel they'll be better off financially a year from now.
Canada's economic growth curbed by cautious business spending and increased U.S. fiscal restraint: RBC Economics
Cautious business spending and increased U.S. fiscal restraint will weigh on Canadian growth, according to the latest Economic and Financial Market Outlook issued today by RBC Economics. RBC trimmed its real GDP growth forecast to 1.8 per cent through 2013, following softer-than-expected growth in 2012.
CREA Updates Resale Housing Forecast
National home sales declined 2.1% from January to February. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity came in 15.8% below levels in February 2012. The number of newly listed homes fell 1.2% from January to February.
Home Sales Continue at Modest Pace: Pent-Up Demand Growing
The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 4,501 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during February, down 23.6 per cent compared to February 2012. Total sales dollar volume was down 29.9 per cent to $2.39 million. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $514,134, up 3.1 per cent from January, but down 8.1 per cent from a year ago.
CIBC Mortgage Poll: Canadians think the time is right to lock into a fixed mortgage
Annual poll finds nearly half of all Canadians would choose a fixed rate mortgage; more Canadians believe today's low interest rates will remain unchanged over the next year
Impressive Job Gains, A New Rate War, Bank of Canada Changing Its Tune and February Data From Toronto and Vancouver : The Week That Was in Canadian Economic, Housing and Mortgage News
Last week began with a major bank lowering its posted rate for some five year fixed terms to 2.99%, just as the same bank did last year around this time. The federal finance minister was quick to criticize the move, suggesting that it could create a “race to the bottom” and renew consumer temptations to pile on mortgage debt – something that the minister has spent much of the past year urging consumers not to do.
Private Sector Economists Forecast Modest GDP Growth During Meeting With Minister of Finance
The consensus coming out of the meeting is that Canada will continue to see modest gross domestic product (GDP) growth in 2013. Yet, the private sector forecasts have been revised downward due to external pressures outside of the Government’s control. Canada is in the midst of a very volatile and risk-filled global environment due to unstable economic environments in Europe and the United States.
Bank of Canada maintains overnight rate target at 1 per cent
The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 1/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 3/4 per cent. The global economic outlook is broadly consistent with the Bank's projection in its January Monetary Policy Report (MPR). Global financial conditions remain stimulative, despite recent volatility. In the United States, the economic expansion is continuing at a gradual pace and private sector demand is gaining momentum. Fiscal drag in the United States over the next two years remains consistent with the Bank's January projection, although it is likely to be more front-loaded as a result of sequestration cuts.
C.D. Howe Institute's Monetary Policy Council Urges Bank of Canada to Hold Overnight Rate at 1.00 Percent
The C.D. Howe Institute's Monetary Policy Council (MPC) today recommended that the Bank of Canada maintain its target for the overnight rate, the very short-term interest rate the Bank targets for monetary policy purposes, at 1.00 percent at its next announcement on March 6, 2013. The Council further called for the Bank to hold the target at 1.00 through to March of 2014.
How Ontario Drivers Can Help Fight Auto Insurance Fraud
"By being vigilant, Ontario drivers can help put a stop to fraudsters who abuse the auto insurance system and raise premiums for everyone," said Philip Howell, CEO and Superintendent of Financial Services.
Canadian current account deficit narrowed in the fourth quarter
Canada’s current account deficit narrowed by $0.785 billion to $17.3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2012 from a downwardly revised $18.0 billion in the third quarter of 2012. Even with the revision, the third quarter’s deficit was the second largest on record. The decrease in the current account deficit was due to a $2.3 billion drop in the goods deficit. This improvement was flagged by the earlier released fourth-quarter 2012 merchandise trade data.
BC Commercial Leading Indicator Edges Lower in Fourth Quarter
"A modest slowing of commercial real estate activity is in general accord with 2013 being somewhat of a transition year for the economy,” said Brendon Ogmundson, BCREA Economist. “We anticipate that slower growth through the first half of 2013 will give way to a more robust economy in 2014 and therefore an increase in commercial market activity."
Canada's housing affordability slightly improves for the second consecutive quarter: RBC Economics
Canada's homeownership costs fell slightly in the second consecutive quarter in the last quarter of 2012, according to the latest Housing Trends and Affordability Report issued by RBC Economics Research. The RBC report notes that small declines in mortgage rates and in home prices across several markets resulted in an overall improvement in affordability.
Making Budget Promises Matter: Canada's 2012 Fiscal Accountability Rankings --C.D. Howe Institute
Canada's senior governments have regularly missed budget spending and revenue targets during the last decade, according to a report released today by the C.D. Howe Institute. In "Canada's 2012 Fiscal Accountability Rankings," authors Colin Busby and William B.P. Robson find the combined spending overruns of federal, provincial and territorial governments have surpassed $53 billion in the last 10 years.
Move-up purchasers set to increase their stake in homeownership in 2013, despite overall trend toward moderation, says RE/MAX
"Canadian confidence in homeownership continues to fuel homebuying activity, particularly in the move-up segment, "says Elton Ash, Regional Executive Vice President, RE/MAX Of Western Canada. "Equity gains have been a primary driver, with return on investment exceptionally strong in the past decade. In fact, the Prairies have seen a substantial upswing in housing values between 2002 and 2012, yet prices remain surprisingly affordable. Strong economic fundamentals helped fuel record price appreciation in markets like Regina, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg after decades of slow but steady growth."
BC Home Sales Remain Subdued but Stable
The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 3,410 residential sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC during January, up 1.8 per cent from December on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis, but down 13.6 per cent compared to January 2012. Similarly, total sales volume increased 3.8 per cent SA, but declined 16 per cent from the same month last year. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $514,134, up 3.2 percent from December, however, down 2.7 per cent from a year ago.
Canadian home sales edge higher in January
According to statistics released today by CREA, national home sales activity edged up on a month-over-month basis in January 2013. National sales activity has held fairly steady after gearing down last August in the wake of tightened mortgage lending rules.
Nine Per Cent Household Savings Rate Key to Meeting Long-Term Financial Goals
Douglas Porter, BMO Chief Economist, forecasts that savings rates may need to reach 9 per cent to strengthen household finances over the long term. Report shows the brighter side of the debt picture, with household financial assets reaching near-record 453 per cent of disposable income
Never too old for "life's firsts" - as long as you save
TD Canada Trust provides advice on saving enough now to be able to enjoy new adventures well into retirement. "Traditionally, we used to consider life's firsts as getting married, buying a house, starting a family and then celebrating retirement," says John Tracy, a senior vice president at TD Canada Trust. "But today, people are living longer and are more active in their retirement than previous generations - and that means they need more money to sustain their quality of life and retirement dreams."
What's Funding Your Future? Canadians relying on RRSPs for retirement but not necessarily contributing: Scotiabank Poll
One third of Canadians planning to retire have pushed back their planned retirement age. "We want to encourage as many Canadians as possible to consider contributing to an RRSP and take advantage of this important investment opportunity as part of their overall financial plan," Mike Henry, Senior Vice President, Retail Payment, Deposits and Lending, Scotiabank.
BC Home Sales to Trend Higher in 2013/2014
"2013 is shaping up to be a transition year in the BC housing market,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “The groundwork has already begun for stronger housing demand as a significant number of part-time jobs in BC were converted into full-time employment last year."
The Home Inspection Network™ Announces Specialty Services One-Stop-Shop
"Our research indicates there is a significant need for this kind of network," said Phil West, President of Centract, which is the parent of The Home Inspection Network. "For consumers and real estate agents we can provide peace-of-mind, quality and efficiency - all in one stop."
Decoding the Bank of Canada’s Monetary Policy Commentary
Last week, the Bank of Canada maintained its key policy overnight lending rate at 1%, where it
has been since September, 2010. This was not a surprise at all but there were some different
messages contained in Governor Mark Carney’s commentary and in the Bank’s Monetary Policy
Report published the same day as the rate announcement was made.
High-income trends among Canadian taxfilers
The top 1% of Canada's 25.5 million tax filers accounted for 10.6% of the nation's total income in 2010, down from a peak of 12.1% in 2006. In the early 1980s, the top 1% of tax filers held 7.0% of the total income reported by all tax filers. This proportion edged up to 8.0% in the early 1990s and reached 11.0% by the early 2000s.
Canadian Commercial Real Estate Market Performs Despite Turbulent International Backdrop
"We anticipate strong interest in Canadian real estate from a broad cross section of investors in 2013, with the REIT sector dominating transactions," said Keith Reading, Director of Research at Morguard. "Canadian property values will remain at the peak, given access to low cost capital and attractive yields."
Low-rise sector suffers limited supply at year's end
Sales of new ground-related housing in 2012 added up to the second-lowest total since 2000 as constrained land continues to affect affordability for new home buyers in the GTA, the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) reported today.
Canadian homebuyers more experienced, financially prudent moving forward, says RE/MAX
RE/MAX Homebuying Trends Survey identifies Canadian real estate trends for 2013 and 2014. Almost one in five purchasers is single. More than two-thirds are second or multi-time purchasers. Four out of 10 purchasers between the ages of 18 to 34 have a downpayment of 20 per cent or more. Just over 80 per cent of buyers believe housing values in their area will rise or remain the same.
Obama's Second Term - What Does It Mean for Canada?
Barack Obama will be sworn in for his second term on Monday, January 21, 2013. So, what can the world expect from his second term, and do current U.S. fiscal troubles mean that Canada should move away from its longstanding dependence on trade with the U.S.?
U.S. housing starts surge to a four and a half year high in December
Housing starts jumped by 12.1% to an annualized pace of 954,000 units in December 2012, beat market expectations for a modest rise to 890,000 units, and represented the highest level of starts since June 2008.
Investment in non residential construction up 1% over last quarter
Investment in non-residential building construction amounted to $12.0 billion in the fourth quarter, up 1.0% from the previous quarter. This was the third consecutive quarterly increase and was led by higher spending for commercial and industrial buildings.
Canadian home sales little changed in December
According to statistics released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national home sales activity was little changed on a month-over-month basis in December 2012, holding it in line with levels reported in August when demand first geared down in the wake of tighter mortgage lending rules.
Canadians dream of early retirement but few are taking steps to achieve it
ING DIRECT survey finds 65% of Canadians either don't have an RSP or have made no contributions to their retirement savings in 2012
Canadians not keeping track of their discretionary spending
Many Canadians are taking a carefree approach to spending, acknowledging in a new poll commissioned by Edward Jones that they keep track of fixed expenses, but when it comes to discretionary spending, they aren't paying as close attention. One in three Canadians (29 per cent) only keep track of fixed expenses, such as mortgage, rent or car payments. A further 32 per cent of Canadians do not keep track of their expenses at all.
MCAP: The Broker Perception Challenge
Maritz Research Canada and CAAMP published their Mortgage Insights report last week and the
results of the combination of survey data from both consumer and industry participants are
interesting, provocative and, in some areas, a little sobering.
Brief, Mild Correction Forecast for Canada's Housing Market in First Half of 2013, According to Royal LePage
“More home buyers moved to the sidelines as 2012 progressed, as economic uncertainty abroad and reduced affordability became a drag on the market, however house prices proved resilient,” said Phil Soper, president and chief executive of Royal LePage. “Our sturdy domestic economy and encouraging employment trends have emboldened sellers, and some have opted to let market conditions adjust before listing. Simply put, fewer home owners listed their properties in the second half of the year, which kept inventory levels lower, and supported home values.”
Canadian housing starts continued to moderate in December
Housing starts in Canada were trending at 212,282 units in December, according to CMHC. “As expected, housing starts remained below their recent trend in Canada. The decrease recorded in December was due to a decline in rural starts, while urban starts remained stable. Housing starts were below their trends in all regions except Ontario,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC.
New smartphone app makes locating ding free® credit union ATMs a snap
Canadian credit union members can celebrate having a bit more cash in their pockets after the holiday season, thanks to the national ding free® ATM marketing campaign and smartphone locator app. The term ding free® means credit union members can use any participating ATM without paying the annoying surcharge fee typically charged when they use an ATM that isn't owned by their credit union.
MCAP: Looking at Sources for Mortgage Financing in Canada
Last week, CMHC published its 10th annual Canadian Housing Observer for 2012. It is a comprehensive review of the state of Canada’s housing and mortgage markets which, unlike CMHC quarterly forecasts, looks back at where these markets have been - and with some data points, back some sixty or more years. The thorough analysis and useful historical context of the report makes up for the fact that most of the data is current only to the end of 2011 and, in some cases, up to mid-2012.
Canadian labour report showed another surge in hiring in December
Canadian employment jumped by 39,800 in December 2012 following November's 59,300 surge, well beyond the consensus forecast for a 5,000 job increase. The strong ending to 2012 sealed a decent quarter for hiring with the average monthly increase coming in at 33,600, which was faster than the 19,000 monthly increase recorded in the third quarter of 2012 and the 26,000 monthly pace recorded in the first half of last year.
Toronto's multi-channel economic engine once again tops the nation in CIBC rankings
Calgary, Regina and Winnipeg show strong and more sustainable economic momentum. "What's so impressive about Toronto's performance is that the city has topped our ranking for more than a year," says CIBC Deputy Chief Economist Benjamin Tal
CIBC Poll: New Year, Same Plan - Pay Down Debt
Paying Down Debt once again tops the list of financial priorities for Canadians entering 2013, while Retirement Planning declines in importance
BMO Experts Look Back at 2012, Announce Predictions for 2013
Top economic and market strategists from BMO Financial Group released their economic and market analysis of 2012 and made their predictions for 2013 and beyond. It looks like the Bank of Canada will preside over a third consecutive year of no change in interest rates. We also doubt that his successor at the Bank of Canada will move on rates either, as the next rate hike in Canada will likely not come until 2014.
Scotia Global Forecast Update
We expect that global growth will build momentum, albeit gradually, over the next two years. The Federal Reserve has introduced another and significant round of non-conventional monetary accommodation that, along with the winding down of household deleveraging in the U.S., will help support increased spending, homebuilding and risk-taking at a time of increased federal fiscal restraint. The central banks in the euro zone, the U.K. and Japan will provide more support as needed.
CMHC Releases its Tenth Annual Review of the State of Housing in Canada
As a result of prudent mortgage lending practices, the number of mortgages in arrears in Canada were trending down in 2011 and the first half of 2012, according to the Canadian Housing Observer, released today by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).
'Tis the Season of the Last Minute Shopper: the Scotiabank Holiday Spending Poll finds Canadians Hitting the Malls Later this Year
Not finished your holiday shopping yet? You aren't alone. According to the Scotiabank Holiday Shopping Poll, more Canadians are delaying their holiday shopping this year with fewer people shopping a month or two before December (36 per cent vs. 42 per cent in 2011) and more buying their gifts throughout the hustle and the bustle of the month of December (42 per cent vs. 34 per cent in 2011). A small, but brave group of last-minute shoppers are planning on leaving it until the last two days before the holiday (1 per cent).
CREA Updates Resale Housing Forecast
When CREA's resale housing forecast was published in September, activity showed the first signs of slowing in the wake of new mortgage lending regulations. Demand has remained at lower levels, and this trend is expected to persist through the end of the year. Lower than projected third quarter sales have downgraded the prospects for activity this year in almost every province.
BC Home Sales Pulled Lower by Vancouver/Fraser Valley
Vancouver, BC – December 13, 2012. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that the dollar volume of homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC declined 24.6 per cent to $2.3 billion in November compared to the same month last year. A total of 4,680 MLS® residential unit sales were recorded over the same period, down 17 per cent from November 2011. The average MLS® residential price was $480,861, down 9.1 per cent from a year ago.
CIBC Poll: Started your holiday shopping? There's a good chance you've also picked something up for yourself
A new CIBC (CM: TSX; NYSE) Poll conducted by Harris/Decima reveals that among Canadians who have started their holiday shopping, nearly one-half say they have made some unplanned purchases for themselves along the way, adding over $130 on average to their holiday expenses so far.
Canadian Economic Growth to Strengthen Modestly in 2013 as Global Uncertainty Eases: RBC Economics
"We expect that factors weighing on growth in late 2012 and early 2013 will reverse course, which, alongside accommodative financial conditions and low household borrowing rates, will set the stage for better economic growth," said Craig Wright senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. "And, as the cloak of uncertainty is removed from the global economy, demand for Canadian exports will rise, as will investment and hiring."
Still More Weakness than Strength in Global Housing Markets: Scotiabank
The downward pressure on pricing in a number of national housing markets appears to have eased over the summer and early fall though considerable strains remain, according to a Global Real Estate Trends report released today by Scotiabank.
Half of Canadians Say Their Workplace is Throwing a Holiday Party Despite Challenging Economy: BMO
According to BMO's Commercial Banking Holiday Survey, released today, more than half of working Canadians say their boss will be more of a Santa than a Scrooge for hosting a holiday office party. However, for those planning to celebrate the season with their work colleagues, expect 'Santa' to be doing a bit of belt tightening compared to last year.
November Housing Starts down 3.6% from October
Housing starts in Canada were trending at 214,680 units in November, according to CMHC. The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts. The standalone monthly SAAR was 196,125 units in November, down from 203,487 in October. “As expected, housing starts remained below their recent trend and continued to fall for a third straight month. This decrease was mainly attributable to declines in single-detached and multi-unit housing construction in Ontario and British Columbia, resulting in part from a decline in the pace of pre-sales relative to that in late 2010 and early 2011,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC.
Bank of Canada maintains overnight rate target at 1 per cent
OTTAWA, Dec. 4, 2012 /CNW/ - The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 1/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 3/4 per cent.
One-in-Four Working Canadians Expect to Receive Year-End Bonus-BMO Survey
Savings, paying down household debt and holiday gifts top uses for year-end bonuses. Twenty-six per cent of working Canadians expect to receive a year-end bonus. Eighty-six per cent of those who anticipate receiving a bonus believe it will be the same or more than last year. Half of Canadians who expect to receive a year-end bonus will use it to save/invest or pay down household debt
BC Commercial Leading Indicator Holds Steady in the Third Quarter
The BCREA Commercial Leading Indicator (CLI) held steady in the third quarter, albeit down 0.1 points to 112.5. This follows several consecutive quarters of strong increases and the index is 3 per cent higher than in the third quarter of 2011.
70% of young Canadians want more financial information about purchasing a home
Consumers have a new tool to help navigate the complexities and financial implications of purchasing a home. Earlier today, The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), and the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) launched the Homebuyers’ Road Map. The Road Map is available on CREA’s website at crea.ca.
Major developments ahead in Canada's credit card industry
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is pleased to see significant progress on two major problems in Canada's credit card industry and is watching for an imminent ruling from Canada's Competition Tribunal on an important case on Visa and MasterCard practices.
Canada's Housing more affordable in Q3
"The broad affordability picture has been somewhat stationary over the last two years, alternating between periods of improvement and deterioration, resulting in an affordability trend that is, on net, essentially flat," said Craig Wright senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. "We saw this directionless trend in the third quarter as housing affordability fully reversed the mild erosion witnessed in the first half of the year."
CIBC Poll: Nearly one in ten Canadians plan to take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals
9% of Canadians say they plan to make a purchase on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, with another 7 per cent of Canadians saying they were undecided as to whether they will be making any purchases this weekend. Regionally, Atlantic Canadians (14 per cent) and Ontarians (13 per cent) are among the most likely to say they plan to make a purchase during Black Friday and Cyber Monday
Report identifies new risks in the Canadian mortgage market: CAAMP
Since the most recent round of mortgage tightening came into effect in July 2012, there has been a drop in Canadian housing resale activity: between August and October, sales were 8 per cent lower than in the year prior to the announcement. Approximately 17 per cent of high ratio mortgages funded in 2010 could not have been funded today, including 11% of prospective high ratio home buyers who can’t qualify under the new 25 year amortization rule.
Canadian resale housing activity stable in October
Home sales little changed (-0.1%) from September to October. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity down 0.8% from October 2011. Number of newly listed homes down 3.8% from September to October. Market remains firmly in balanced territory.
Scotiabank completes acquisition of ING Bank of Canada (ING DIRECT)
"I am very pleased to announce the completion of Scotiabank's acquisition of ING DIRECT Canada," said Anatol von Hahn, Scotiabank Group Head, Canadian Banking. "ING DIRECT will continue to operate as a separate and distinct wholly-owned subsidiary, providing low cost and highly competitive products to self-directed customers. This acquisition is a great opportunity for us and supports our strategic objectives.
BC man and issuer sanctioned for illegally distributing securities
In a settlement agreement with the British Columbia Securities Commission Sean Tan and Berkeley Coffee & Tea Inc. (Berkeley) have admitted they illegally distributed securities in B.C.
Almost Half of Canadians Plan to Shop via their Mobile Devices or Online this Holiday Season
"Canadians, like shoppers around the world, are increasingly looking to their mobile devices to solve their holiday dilemmas," said eBay Canada Country Manager Andrea Stairs. "In the past two years, we've seen the value of eBay mobile transactions increase from $2 billion to $10 billion globally. Nothing can compare to having the world's largest marketplace at your fingertips! No matter where you are, or what you're doing, you can turn inspiration into delight in seconds on the eBay Mobile app."
Canadian families: Spending today or saving for tomorrow?
Research released today by President's Choice Financial® provides a revealing snapshot of the "new normal" when it comes to the household finances of Canadian families. While an overwhelming majority still manage to save for the future, many say they have also had to cut back on both spending and saving since the economic downturn of 2008.
Snapshot: Canadian mindset on the economy
A recent Scotiabank poll found that while Canadians' overall economic outlook is more optimistic, they are still hesitant when it comes to their personal investment strategies in the fluctuating economic environment. Canadian optimism for the economy moved to 49 per cent, up significantly from last year (39 per cent). Despite the rise in optimism, 62 per cent of Canadians viewed maintaining their current market position as the wiser investment strategy for the remainder of this year.
Canadians in the Spending Spirit says survey
According to the 2012 BMO Holiday Spending Outlook, Canadians expect to spend an average of $1,610 this holiday season - up from $1,397 in 2011. Holiday shoppers expect to allocate most of their holiday spending to gift purchases - an average of $674. The primary reasons cited for spending more on gift purchases - up nearly $100 from last year - are having more people to shop for (41 per cent) followed by being better off financially (39 per cent).
BCREA ECONOMICS NOW
Canadian housing starts declined to 204,107 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) in October, down from September's 223,995 units. New home construction in BC urban centres was essentially flat in October at 26,788 units (SAAR) compared to 27,184 in September. On a year-over-year basis, multiple unit starts in BC were unchanged while single family starts were 6 per cent lower. Overall, BC housing starts were 2 per cent lower than in October 2011.
Canadian Housing Starts to Moderate, Resales Stable in 2013
“A weaker outlook for global economic conditions and the waning of the effect of pre-sales from late 2010 and early 2011, which contributed to support multi-family starts this year, will bring moderation in housing starts next year. Nevertheless, employment growth and net migration will help support housing starts activity going forward,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist for CMHC.
Snapshot: Canadian mindset on mortgages
According to a recent Scotiabank poll, the role of the Canadian home is key, with the majority of Canadians (77 per cent) indicating their home is an investment rather than an expense. The investment may extend beyond retirement for some; among those mortgage holders not yet retired, one-third (32 per cent) say they will likely still have their mortgage when they retire.
Today is B-20 Day
Rob McLister comments on B-20 mortgage guidelines and its effects on lenders. " A host of lenders have announced stricter rules on things like conventional mortgage qualification, self-employed income verification, borrowed down payments and cash-back mortgages. Albeit, some implemented these changes well ahead of today."
U.S. Presidential Election-BMO Poll of Canadian Business Owners Reveals If "The Vote" Will Affect The Economy
With the U.S. Presidential Election coming down to the wire, BMO Bank of Montreal today released the results of a poll of business owners showing one-third (32 per cent) believe the U.S. economy will pick up after next week's vote and 27 per cent don't believe the American economy will improve after November 6th.
Ben Tal comments on Canadian market vs US market
The Canada of today is very different than a pre-recession US, namely as far as borrower profiles are concerned. Therefore, when it comes to jitters regarding a US-type meltdown here at home, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
Minister of Finance Sees Future Growth for Canada’s Economy Despite Global Uncertainty
“The good news is that real growth in Canada has been positive, if modest, and the economists in today’s session continue to see real growth going forward,” the Minister said. “However, Canada is not immune to the renewed weakness in the global economy, especially in Europe. In particular, Canada has been affected by lower commodity prices, which are dampening government revenue growth. This will have an impact on the fiscal outlook that was presented in Economic Action Plan 2012.”
Nearly Half of Canadians Planning Home Renovations This Fall: BMO Home Renovation Survey
Most popular Fall renovation projects include bathroom, kitchen and bedroom. More than half plan to spend less than $1,000; one-third expect to spend up to $5,000. Canadians relying mostly on savings to fund renovations; taking a DIY approach to save money.
Canadian commercial real estate investment volumes on verge of exceeding pre-credit crisis levels, while investors' lingering indecision stymies U.S. recovery
The gap between Canadian and U.S. property market fundamentals is not only evident on the leasing side of the ledger, but also on the investment side. Historically low interest rates have Canada on the verge of exceeding pre-credit crisis investment levels, while cautious lenders and investors leave the U.S. with some distance still to cover.
Almost nine out of ten surveyed expect to live to past eighty with one-third to sell real estate investments to support retirement
Sun Life Financial and CARP today released the results of a poll showing that while the majority of respondents age 45-plus expect to live past age 80, one in three of respondents are relying on selling their investments in real estate for financial support during their retirement years.
Harper government moves to protect consumers using prepaid credit cards
The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, and Lucie Tedesco, Deputy Commissioner of the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC), today announced new regulations to protect consumers when using prepaid credit cards. The Harper Government is extending the existing consumer protection framework to prepaid payment products so that Canadians are better able to choose forms of payment that best meet their needs.
Bank of Canada maintained tightening bias and overnight rate at 1.0%
Today's statement indicated that the Bank sees the domestic economy as continuing along a moderate growth path supported by stimulative financial conditions and elevated prices for commodities produced in Canada. The worrisome tone contained in Governor Carney's speech last week did not translate into a material change in the forecast for the economy or forward guidance regarding monetary policy as was expected by markets.
Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement
The Bank of Canada once again opted to hold its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent this morning. The Bank somewhat tempered its bias for higher future interest rates, including a softer statement regarding the appropriateness of a gradual withdrawal of monetary stimulus as excess supply in the economy is absorbed. In a bit of a surprise, the Bank actually raised its forecast for the growth in the Canadian economy this year to 2.2 per cent, but kept its 2013 forecast at 2.3 per cent growth.
Renovated Hotel Provides Homes for Homeless
“Our Government is committed to helping those seeking to break free of the cycle of homelessness and poverty,” said the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). “This facility will help ensure that vulnerable individuals in Victoria can access the housing and services they need so they can participate fully in Canadian life.”
Canadian home sales remain at lower levels in September
Home sales up 2.5% from August to September. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity down 15.1% from September 2011. Number of newly listed homes up 6.5% from August to September. Market remains firmly in balanced territory, but conditions have eased.
Tighter Regulation Trims Home Sales
BCREA reports that the dollar volume of homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in BC declined 28.5 per cent to $2.2 billion in September compared to the same month last year. A total of 4,539 MLS® residential unit sales were recorded over the same period, down 24.3 per cent from September 2011. The average MLS® residential price was $494,213, down 5.6 per cent from a year ago.
Genworth Canada Ratings Confirmed by S&P and DBRS
Genworth Canada's financial strength remains rated 'AA-' with a stable outlook by S&P and 'AA' with a stable trend by DBRS. The ratings reflect the Company's strong capital position and risk management expertise, and prudential regulation by the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, among other factors.
NHPI rose 0.2% in August, following a 0.1% increase in July
The combined metropolitan regions of Toronto and Oshawa, as well as Calgary, were the top contributors to the advance. In Toronto and Oshawa, market conditions were the primary reason for higher prices. In Calgary, builders reported that the main factors were increased material and labour costs, as well as market conditions. The largest monthly price advance in August occurred in the metropolitan region of Québec (+0.6%), followed by London, which recorded a 0.5% increase. In both, the increases were primarily the result of higher material and labour costs.
Ontarians sacrifice entertainment and vacations for home ownership
A poll released today by the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) reveals that nearly two-thirds of Ontarians (65 per cent) have made sacrifices when saving for the purchase of a home. The top areas for cutting back spending include entertainment (70 per cent), vacations (69 per cent) and electronic goods (51 percent).
September 2012 Housing Starts in Canada
“Housing starts in September were largely in line with the latest trend figure. The monthly decrease posted in September was mostly due to a decrease in urban multiples starts. As expected, the number of multiples starts in Ontario, particularly in Toronto, reverted back to a level more in line with the average pace of activity over the last six months,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC.
Canadian house prices edge up in third quarter while the number of home sales fall
The Royal LePage House Price Survey released today showed the average price of a home in Canada increased year-over-year between 1.8 and 4.8 per cent in the third quarter of 2012. Survey findings indicated that the average standard two-storey home in Canada increased 4 per cent year-over-year rising to $403,747, while detached bungalows rose 4.8 per cent to $366,773. Standard condominiums witnessed an increase of 1.8 per cent to $243,607. Most cities in Canada experienced modest price appreciation in the quarter, but fewer homes were sold compared to the same period in 2011.
Be Loyal & Don’t Shop: A Recipe for Overpaying
Rob McLister offers key takeaways from a BoC research paper with insights on why mortgage consumers pay higher rates than they have to.
Budget deficit lowered by 0.6 billion from July 2011 to July 2012
There was a budgetary deficit of $1.1 billion in July 2012, compared to a deficit of $1.7 billion in July 2011. Revenues increased by $0.2 billion, or 0.8 per cent, as increases in excise taxes and duties and in non-resident income tax revenues were largely offset by lower corporate income tax and other revenues. Program expenses decreased by $0.1 billion, or 0.4 per cent, reflecting lower transfer payments, offset in part by higher other program expenses. Public debt charges decreased by $0.4 billion, or 14.2 per cent, largely reflecting a lower Consumer Price Index adjustment on real return bonds.
Homeownership in Canada: A love story
More than two thirds (69 per cent) of Canadians believe that a home says a lot about a person and must reflect their personal style and image. Women were more likely to hold this true than men (74 per cent versus 65 per cent); but the home isn't always where the heart is. Three in ten Canadians (29 per cent) say a home is just something that provides them with shelter.
Most people think their financial smarts are better than the "average Canadian"
Most Canadian consumers think their own level of knowledge about finances is above that of the "average Canadian", according to the RBC Canadian Consumer Outlook. 70% describe their own financial smarts as "excellent/good", while only three-in-10 feel the same about their neighbours.
Canadian consumer prices rose in August with the annual increase slowing
Canada's headline consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.2% in August 2012, which was less than expectations for 0.3%. On a year-over-year basis, the inflation rate inched lower to 1.2% from 1.3% in July. The Bank of Canada's core measure rose an expected 0.3% in August and stood 1.6% higher than in August 2011.
CIBC Poll: Canada's Baby Boomers not interested in a modest retirement
A new CIBC (TSX: CM) (NYSE: CM) poll conducted by Leger Marketing reveals that most of Canada's 50-59 year olds don't intend to give up their current lifestyle as they enter retirement, despite falling short of their retirement savings goals. The poll also reveals that some Canadians in their 50s are planning to carry debt into retirement with no immediate plans to pay it off, an approach that could reduce their retirement cash flow and jeopardize their plans to live the good life.
Spanish bonds in high demand
European equity markets traded with a bid tone overnight as the region’s debt outperformed, with Spanish bonds in high demand in anticipation of an official bailout announcement. The common currency, however, continues its selloff since yesterday as traders take profits off the table after the aggressive upward movement around the end of last week.
2011 census shows families getting smaller and more diverse
The 2011 Census shows us that Canadian households have been getting smaller and that the proportion of households comprised of couples with children has decreased. In 2011, households consisting of one person accounted for 28% of all households; about a three-fold increase from 9% in 1961. During the same period, the share of large households containing five people or more decreased from 32% to 8%. For the first time in 2011, there were slightly more one-person households than couple households with children aged 24 and under.
CREA Updates Resale Housing Forecast
Since CREA's last resale housing forecast, mortgage regulations were tightened further, activity in Ontario softened, and the slowdown of sales activity in British Columbia deepened. As a result of these developments, CREA has lowered its forecast for Canadian home sales this year and next. The national average price forecast has also been reduced, reflecting an expected decrease in Ontario's and British Columbia's provincial sales as a proportion of national activity.
BC Home Sales Continue to Trend Lower
BCREA reports that the dollar volume of homes sold through MLS in BC declined 25.4 per cent to $2.6 billion in August compared to the same month last year."Consumer demand continued to trend lower in August," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "Tighter mortgage credit conditions introduced in July appear to be taking a toll on an already tentative market. However, with home sales slower than improving economic conditions suggest, a rebound may be in store before year-end."
More 'Decliners' Than 'Gainers' In Global Property Markets: Scotiabank Economics
Global housing markets remained under strain in the second quarter, according to the latest Global Real Estate Trends report released today by Scotiabank. "Among the international property markets we track, the number of countries reporting declining average real prices on a year-over-year (y/y) basis outnumbered those reporting price increases by more than two to one," said Adrienne Warren, Senior Economist at Scotiabank. "Weak consumer confidence, high unemployment and tight credit conditions continue to weigh heavily on housing demand and pricing."
Housing starts trending at 222,900
“The increase in housing starts in August was the result of a few, large, multi-unit projects in the Greater Toronto area. This increase is primarily a reflection of the high level of pre-sales in some of these large multi-unit projects in late 2010 and early 2011, which is in line with job gains at that time,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. “The higher level of starts recorded in Atlantic Canada and British Columbia in August reflect low levels of activity in July rather than an increasing trend that was registered in August. Overall, moderation in housing starts activity is still expected for the remainder of 2012 and 2013.”
Western provinces set the pace
The RBC provincial outlook reports that the western part of the country is benefiting the most from booming activity related to commodities. The Prairie Provinces also enjoy strong gains in their agricultural sectors. For the most part, provinces in the central and eastern regions lack a powerful catalyst for growth and are subject more intensely to fiscal restraint. RBC expects Alberta and Saskatchewan to trade top spots in the provincial growth rankings in 2012 and 2013.
$6.8 billion of building permits issued in July
Municipalities issued building permits worth just over $6.8 billion in July, down 2.3% from June. This followed a month of relative stability between May and June. The main factor in the decline was lower construction intentions for both residential and non-residential buildings, particularly in Ontario.
Canadian economy added 34,300 jobs in August
The Canadian economy added 34,300 jobs in August 2012, thereby beating the consensus estimate for a 10,000 increase. Labour force increased by 30,500, thereby leaving unemployment rate at 7.3%. Part-time employment recovered in August with 46,700 jobs created while full-time employment fell by 12,500.
Higher commodity prices are unambiguously good for Canada says Carney
“Most fundamentally, higher commodity prices are unambiguously good for Canada,” Governor Carney told delegates at a speech he presented today. “The strength of Canada’s resource sector is a reflection of success, not a harbinger of failure.”
Ontario Real Estate Association survey asks what's top of mind when listing
Beyond worrying about the state of the real estate market (77 per cent), a new survey from the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) shows that Ontarians' top concerns when selling a home are understanding the process and the legal documents required in a sale (61 per cent), fixing up the home in order to list (60 per cent) and the number of days on the market before it sells (59 per cent).
Xceed Mortgage Corporation Reports Third Quarter 2012 Results
Xceed Mortgage Corporation today reported its third quarter results for the three and nine month period ended July 31, 2012. Net income after tax of $8.3 million for both the 3 month and 9 month periods ended July 31, 2012. Results include a one-time gain of $8.6 million recognized as a result of the early clean-up call of Xceed Mortgage Trust ("XMT 2") announced on July 17, 2012. Basic and diluted earnings per share of $0.31 and $0.29 for the third quarter of fiscal 2012.
BoC maintains 1% overnight rate
The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 1/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 3/4 per cent.
MCAP: Summer’s Over - Now For Some Good News
Vacations are mostly over, school starts today and the next four months should tell us whatkind of economic environment we are really dealing with. It’s time to dig in and drive ourbusinesses forward and finish the year strongly. The summer has given us many predictions –some pessimistic and some less so – but, as in sports, enough of the prognostications; let’s get on with the games.
BMO Labour Day Survey: Canadians More Optimistic this Year About their Company's Growth Prospects and Job Security
64% of Canadians comfortable with their job security - up 13 percentage points from last year. 41% believe their company is growing and will be hiring - up 13 percentage points from 2011. 39% expect a promotion or raise this year - up 11 percentage points
Canadian GDP rose 0.5% in the Q2, Construction outshines renos and resales
GDP rose 0.5% in the second quarter, matching the pace of the two previous quarters. Investment in housing advanced 0.4% in the second quarter, the sixth consecutive quarterly gain. However, this gain was below the 2.7% increase in the previous quarter. New housing construction increased 4.0% following a 3.9% rise in the previous quarter. This second quarter increase was dampened by a 1.5% decline in renovation activity, as well as a 4.0% decline in ownership transfer costs as housing resale activity slowed.
Bernanke addresses economic symposium
What emerged from today’s speech was a strong endorsement that non-traditional policy moves like asset purchases have been effective in lowering interest rates and thus boosting growth. In other words, another round of asset purchases is certainly an option to be used if required; however, the speech was less clear in terms of whether the conditions for implementation were present.
Scotiabank reaches agreement to acquire ING Bank of Canada and announces common share offering
Scotiabank announced today that it has reached a definitive agreement to purchase ING Bank of Canada (ING DIRECT) from Netherlands-based parent ING Group for $3.126 billion in cash, which is expected to result in a net investment by Scotiabank of approximately $1.9 billion after deducting the excess capital currently at ING DIRECT. This acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals. The Bank is also announcing a public offering of 29 million common shares at $52 on a bought deal basis for gross proceeds of $1,508,000,000 to fund the acquisition.
B.C. Securities Commission's Criminal Investigations Team and Saanich Police arrest two men in Greater Victoria area
The British Columbia Securities Commission's Criminal Investigations Team and the Saanich Police Department have arrested two Greater Victoria area men and charged them each with two counts under the Securities Act. The charges relate to selling securities without being registered and selling securities without a prospectus.
CIBC Poll: Nearly half of Canadians now have a TFSA - but many are underutilizing the account as part of their savings plans
Many account holders haven't made a contribution yet in 2012; younger Canadians most likely to withdraw funds. "It is encouraging to see that almost half of Canadians have taken advantage of the Tax Free Savings Account, which gives them an additional option to help them reach their financial goals," said Colette Delaney, Executive Vice President, Retail & Business Banking, CIBC. "Given how versatile the TFSA is, there is an opportunity for more Canadians to either contribute to their existing TFSA, or to consider how opening a TFSA could help them achieve their savings goals sooner."
Housing Slightly Less Affordable Across Canada: RBC Economics
Canada's housing market became slightly less affordable for the second consecutive quarter, according to the latest Housing Trends and Affordability Report released by RBC Economics Research. "Market conditions remained fairly balanced across the country in the second quarter, laying the groundwork for further price increases, which in turn contributed to a decrease in affordability," said Craig Wright, senior vice-president and chief economist, RBC. "Going forward, we anticipate that the latest mortgage insurance rule changes and prospects for further erosion in affordability will restrain homebuyer demand in Canada."
Demographic Shifts Not as Bad for Housing as Perceived: CIBC
Housing market activity is projected to soften in the near-term, but the good news is any adjustment will not be aggravated by negative demographic forces. In fact, at least for the next decade, demographic forces will be strong enough to mitigate the damage and probably shorten the duration of the upcoming market adjustment says a new report from CIBC World Market Inc.
Low-rise market suffers from low supply
New home buyers in the GTA purchased 2,266 new homes and condominiums this July, the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) reported. "The Province of Ontario's recent emphasis on intensification has resulted in a shortage of land supply, bringing inventory levels in the low-rise sector to record-low levels," explained BILD President and CEO Bryan Tuckey. "You can't sell what you don't have, and while the high-rise sector is there to help satisfy demand, new home buyers in the GTA end up suffering from a lack of options when it comes to housing type."
End of Summer Cool Down: Canada’s Real Estate Market On Track With Forecasts says MCAP
As the hottest weather of the summer has now passed, so too has the hottest period inCanada’s real estate markets. After a 10 year boom in housing starts, re-sales and prices, onaverage, according to data released last week by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA),markets cooled in July. CMHC also released their quarterly forecast last week which, like mostother forecasts, predicts that “moderation is on the horizon”.
Housing Market Outlook 3rd quarter release from CMHC
Housing starts: Canada’s housing starts activity has been sustained by multiple starts so far in 2012. For the rest of the year, multiple starts are expected to moderate while single starts will remain mostly stable. Overall, total starts are forecast to be 207,200 for 2012 and 193,100 for 2013.
Forbes names Mike Holmes third most trustworthy celebrity
TORONTO, Aug. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Forbes released its list of most trustworthy celebrities. Mike Holmes topped the list in third position, behind Morgan Freeman and Ron Howard. Forbes complied its list using data from E-Poll Market Research, whose E-Score Celebrity service ranks more than 7,000 celebrities on awareness, appeal and 46 different personality attributes. The Trustworthy Score represents a combination of trustworthy and appeal ratings.
CIBC Poll: Short on Savings, Canada's 50-Somethings plan to retire at age 63 - and keep working
Almost half of today's 50-59 year olds have less than $100,000 saved for retirement; many plan to use employment income in retirement to make up for lost savings. "The retirement landscape is shifting as the baby boomers reach traditional retirement age with a smaller nest egg than they expected to have," said Christina Kramer,CIBC. "Many Canadians are now planning to draw on multiple sources of income including employment to fund their retirement, and that makes getting advice about how to manage your income, savings, and investments even more important."
Canadian home sales hold steady in July
According to statistics released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national resale housing activity remained stable from June to July 2012. Prices are off their recent peaks in Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto, but remain above year-ago levels in most markets. Home sales activity little changed (-0.01%) from June to July. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales up 3.3% over levels in July 2011
Safety, perceived value and location most important to Ontario homebuyers
Safety, perceived value and a location close to shopping or transportation are the most important factors Ontarians consider when buying a home. "Security, both physical and financial, is top of mind for Ontarians," says Ron Abraham, president of the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). "Homebuyers may not know which neighbourhoods offer the best potential to grow their investment or which condo building provides maximum security features. A Realtor can help buyers find the right home in an area that meets all their top needs."
Canada's Hot Housing Markets Beginning To Cool: Scotiabank Economists
According to the report, record prices combined with incremental regulatory tightening are reducing affordability and the housing market's earlier momentum, notwithstanding the lowest borrowing costs on record. Pent-up demand has been effectively exhausted after a decade-long housing boom, with Canadian home ownership at record levels. The global outlook also has become much more challenging.
Don't forget your renter's insurance
TD Insurance poll finds one-in-two Canadian renters under 35 don't have renter's insurance. "Moving out of your parents' home for the first time can be very liberating, but it also comes with a lot of financial responsibilities," says Dave Minor, Vice President, TD Insurance. "For those trying to make ends meet, tenants may be tempted to forgo renter's insurance to try to cut costs. But consider the cost of replacing your laptop or smartphone if you were robbed. Before moving out, it's important to understand the basics of renter's insurance and ensure you have the right coverage in place to protect yourself."
CIBC Poll: Almost half of Canadians say their household has no money set aside for emergencies
Poll shows younger Canadians are the least likely to have an emergency savings fund. Only 51 per cent of Canadians aged 18-44 say their household has emergency savings while 60% of 45 - 64s reported that they have emergency savings. "Once you've experienced the financial challenges that come with a leaky roof or an unexpected car repair, the value of having some cash set aside for emergencies becomes clear," said Christina Kramer, Executive Vice President, Retail Distribution and Channel Strategy, CIBC.
University student average debt over $27,000
TD Economics pegs the total average cost for a four-year undergraduate degree while living away from home at $84,000
RBC poll finds women are motivated by life events, men are driven by measuring progress
Both men and women are hands-on when it comes to investing, but they differ in what keeps them interested. According to a recent RBC Direct Investing survey, the largest motivator driving women to become more involved in managing their investments is a life event (28 per cent). For men, on the other hand, it's knowing how much money they have now compared to what they will need in the future (27 per cent).
Canadian housing starts declined in July
“For the first time in seven months, the July monthly SAAR estimate was below the trend estimate. The bulk of the July decrease was in the multiples segment in British Columbia,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts decreased by 6.4 per cent to 187,300 units in July. Urban single starts decreased by 4.0 per cent in July to 64,300 units, while multiple urban starts decreased by 7.6 per cent to 123,000 units.
National building permits fell 2.5% to $6.8 billion in June
The total value of building permits fell 2.5% to $6.8 billion in June, following a 7.1% increase in May. The decline was largely the result of a decrease in the non-residential and residential sectors in Alberta and British Columbia. Contractors took out $2.5 billion worth of permits in the non-residential sector, down 12.3%. This decrease followed a 3.6% gain in May. Non-residential construction intentions declined in six provinces, with Alberta and British Columbia accounting for most of the decrease.
ING reviews position of ING Direct in Canada and UK
ING continuously evaluates its portfolio of businesses, in line with its stated objective of sharpening its focus. Within this context, ING today announced that it is currently reviewing strategic options for ING Direct Canada and ING Direct UK.
AGF Management Limited Completes Sale of AGF Trust
AGF Management Limited ("AGF") today announced it has successfully completed the closing of the sale of AGF Trust Company ("AGF Trust") to B2B Bank, a subsidiary of Laurentian Bank. All regulatory authorizations and approvals have now been received. As a result of the sale, AGF will receive $421.5 million in total cash proceeds comprised of $248 million for the total equity of AGF Trust and repayment of the $109.5 million subordinated debt and the $64 million preferred shares from AGF Trust to AGF Management Limited.
B2B Bank welcomes clients from AGF Trust Company
B2B Bank - Canada's only bank 100% focused on the needs of financial advisors and mortgage brokers - today announced the completion of its acquisition of AGF Trust Company ("AGF Trust") from AGF Management Limited. With this acquisition, B2B Bank will be making its products and services available to some 27,000 advisors who serve thousands of Canadian investors from coast-to-coast.
GDP edged up in May while output from realtors declined 4.8%
Real gross domestic product edged up 0.1% in May, after increasing 0.3% in April. The output of service industries rose 0.1% in May on the strength of retail trade and the finance and insurance sector. Accommodation and food services, and wholesale trade were also up. Transportation services and the arts and entertainment sector, however, declined. Goods production was unchanged in May as the increase in mining and oil and gas extraction was offset by declines in manufacturing and, to a lesser extent, construction.
Toronto ’s Condo Boom: How Much More Analysis Can We Digest?
Like it or not, the Toronto condominium building craze is a national story. It’s frantic pace of new construction and elevated valuations were one of the reasons given by the federal Department of Finance for the need to cool the Canadian housing market by introducing changes to insured mortgages a few weeks ago. The Toronto high rise condominium market was on its way to a crash and something had to be done. A new report from RBC Economics suggests that the booming Toronto condo market is not as poised for a crash as some would believe.
Canada's "Plan B" if economy falters: infrastructure spending, not rate trimming
Ramping up government spending on infrastructure, rather than trimming interest rates, may be Canada's best path should economic growth falter in the next year, notes a new report from CIBC world Markets Inc. "Canada's Plan B can't depend on monetary policy, given how low rates already are," says Avery Shenfeld, Chief Economist, CIBC. "If the global picture materially sours, borrowing more, particularly at the federal level, and spending more on infrastructure projects" could serve to "reduce future deficits and improve growth in the process."
Weekly earnings up 0.5% in May from previous month
Year-over-year growth in average weekly earnings outpaced the national average of 2.5% in five of the largest industrial sectors: construction; educational services; retail trade; accommodation and food services; and manufacturing. In contrast, earnings declined in health care and social assistance.
In construction, weekly earnings increased 5.3% to $1,133.09, and growth was widespread across all industries in this sector.
Scotiabank Commodity Price Index Retreats in June, but Steadies in July
Drought in U.S. Midwest Propelling Grain Prices to Record Highs. Debate Steps Up on an Energy Policy for Canada. "A sharp loss of business confidence worldwide - linked to Euro Zone financial strains and slowing world growth - led investors to shift from riskier assets such as commodities and equities into the security and liquidity of U.S. Treasury securities," said Patricia Mohr, Vice-President, Economics and Commodity Market Specialist, at Scotiabank.
GTA New home sales remain steady in June
Sales of new homes and condominiums in the GTA remained steady with more than 20,000 sold so far this year, the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) reported today.
Canadian Champions in Training: Having Kids in Sports Demands Time, Money and a Plan
It's not just about going for the gold. Rather than focusing on creating the next bumper crop of Canada's elite athletes, a majority (75 per cent) of parents with children in sports are investing their time and hard-earned money to foster leadership qualities, discipline and team building skills, according to the latest research by Investors Group.
CIBC Poll: More than half of retired Canadians carrying debt
While retired Canadians carry less debt than the rest of the country they are less likely to make extra payments, which can lead to higher interest costs over time
EI beneficiaries remain steady
The number of EI beneficiaries nationally totalled 512,600 in May, virtually unchanged from April. This followed three months of consecutive declines. The number of beneficiaries decreased slightly in Alberta, while it edged up in New Brunswick. In British Columbia, the number of beneficiaries decreased in 22 of the 25 large centres, with the largest declines in Squamish, Penticton and Vernon. In Vancouver, 21,100 people received benefits in May, down 19.7% from 12 months earlier. In Victoria, the number was down 19.0% to 2,600.
Moderate growth expected in Canada says Carney
While global headwinds are restraining Canadian economic activity, domestic factors are expected to support moderate growth in Canada. The Bank expects the economy to grow at a pace roughly in line with its production potential in the near term, before picking up through 2013.
U.S. new home construction increased more than expected in June
US Housing starts jumped 6.9% to an annualized pace of 760,000 units in June 2012, which were stronger than the 745,000 units expected by markets.
BoC maintains rate at 1%
The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 1/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 3/4 per cent.
Carney expected to leave rates unchanged
Expectations are for Carney to leave rates unchanged at 1.00% on Tuesday, as well as maintain the BoC’s forward-looking language, which states that some withdrawal of monetary stimulus may be warranted in the future. That being said, the global economy looks much different than it did back when the BoC released its last MPR in April, so it is quite possible that the BoC will reference the current shift in the external environment, as well as the relatively weaker global economy compared to April’s MPR.
Canadian home sales edge lower in June
According to statistics released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national resale housing activity edged lower on a month-over-month basis in June 2012. Price gains remained strong in Toronto, continued slowing in Greater Vancouver, and accelerated in Calgary.
June Housing Starts Increase
“The monthly increase posted in June was mainly attributable to multiple urban starts in Québec and British Columbia. The rate of starts, however, remains close to the six month average,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre. “CMHC still expects the pace of housing starts to moderate as the year progresses,” added Laberge.
Canada's Housing Market at a Tipping Point
National price appreciation forecast to soften modestly for the remainder of the year. "We have had three years of solid house price appreciation in almost all regions of the country," said Phil Soper, president and CEO of Royal LePage Real Estate Services. "... Some regions have reached or perhaps even exceeded the current upper level of price resistance as buyers have embraced an era of historically low mortgage rates."
Bank of Canada’s survey indicates business outlook remains positive
97% of respondents saw inflation remaining within the Bank of Canada’s target range of 1% to 3% during the next two years up from the 91% recorded in the first quarter of 2012. The Senior Loan Officer Survey (SLOS), reflecting credit conditions from the lender perspective, indicated an easing in credit conditions although not to the same extent as was evident in the first quarter of 2012.
B2B Bank mortgages now available for mortgage brokers
2B Bank now offers its own branded line of mortgage products. Formerly known as B2B Trust, B2B Bank previously offered the mortgage products of its parent company, Laurentian Bank. This change is aimed at better positioning the B2B Bank brand and enhancing its recognition within the mortgage broker network outside of Quebec.
Tough new pro consumer regulations over banking complaints
The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, today welcomed landmark new regulations to help consumers resolve disputes in a more timely, impartial and transparent manner. Today’s sweeping new rules will give more power to consumers looking to resolve a dispute with their bank by creating a stronger, more independent consumer complaint system.
7 billion of building permits issued in May
Municipalities issued building permits worth $7.0 billion in May, a 7.4% increase from April and the highest level since May 2007. The increase followed a 4.4% decline in April.
Employment increased 1.0% year over year
In June, employment was little changed for the second consecutive month and the unemployment rate edged down 0.1 percentage points to 7.2%, as fewer people searched for work. Compared with 12 months earlier, employment increased 1.0% or 181,000. At the same time, full-time work was up 222,000 (+1.6%), while part-time work was little changed. The total number of hours worked rose 2.2%.
Greater Vancouver housing market favoured buyers in June
“Overall conditions have trended in favour of buyers in our marketplace in recent months,” Eugen Klein, REBGV president said. “This means buyers are facing less competition and have more selection to choose from compared to earlier in the year.”
Canadian RBC Manufacturing PMI Remains Strong in June
The RBC PMI for June indicated that business conditions in manufacturing strengthened robustly once again although at a rate only slightly stronger than what prevailed in May; however, this represented the strongest improvement in manufacturing confidence since September 2011. The strength in business conditions reflected a continued strong pace of growth in both new orders and production. Indications of robust gains in business conditions are heartening and suggest that strength domestically is helping to offset financial market pressures related to the European sovereign-debt crisis.
Mining bumps up GDP by 0.3% in April
Real gross domestic product grew 0.3% in April, after edging up 0.1% in March. Most of the April increase was attributable to mining and oil and gas extraction and, to a lesser extent, wholesale trade. Transportation services as well as the agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting sector increased. Retail trade, manufacturing, accommodation and food services and the public sector (education, health, and public administration combined) declined.
Vacancy Rate in Seniors’ Housing Residences at 10.6 per cent
OTTAWA, June 26, 2012 — The vacancy rate for standard spaces for seniors across the country was 10.6 per cent this spring, relatively unchanged from 10.7 per cent in 2011, according to CMHC. “While the total number of spaces for seniors increased in 2012, the number of standard spaces actually declined over the same period,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC.
MCAP: Mortgage Rules Tightened: Scanning the Reactions
With the summer vacation season only a few days away, a series of changes to rules for insured
mortgages, some expected and some not, rocked the Canadian mortgage world last week.
U.S. new home sales rose in May
Even with today’s better than expected report, new single-family homes sales remain near record lows and have effectively trended sideways within the 300,000 to 400,000 range since 2009. Newly built homes continue to experience steep price competition from the ample supply of distressed existing residential properties and have seen their market share of single-family home sales fall to 8% compared to the pre-recession long-term average of 18%.
EI beneficiaries down 3rd consecutive month
The number of people receiving regular Employment Insurance (EI) benefits decreased for the third consecutive month in April, down 28,600 (-5.3%) to 513,700. The number of beneficiaries decreased in nine provinces, with the largest percentage declines occurring in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
HARPER GOVERNMENT TAKES FURTHER ACTION TO STRENGTHEN CANADA’S HOUSING MARKET
As part of the Government’s continuous efforts to strengthen Canada’s housing finance system, the Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance, today announced further adjustments to the rules for government-backed insured mortgages.
Affordability factors into greater demand for recreational property in markets across the country this year, says RE/MAX
Sales of recreational product up in 70 per cent of Canadian markets examined. "While buyers are still cautious, they're motivated," says Elton Ash, Regional Executive Vice President, RE/MAX of Western Canada. "Current market conditions have placed them firmly in the driver's seat. While the more favourable climate has factored in, activity has also been fuelled by pent-up demand that's been building since 2008, when many began waiting it out on the sidelines. Opportunity does exist. Canadians love a good deal, and there's no question that there are still some to be had in recreational property markets across the country."
CIBC Poll: Debt Drags Retirement Savings Down
anadians holding debt are actively contributing to their retirement savings - but the more debt products they hold, the less they are able to put away for the future each month, according to a new CIBC (TSX: CM) (NYSE: CM) poll conducted by Harris/Decima. Among Canadians holding debt, 53 per cent say they have made a contribution towards their retirement in the last 12 months, in line with the broader national average of 49 per cent of Canadians who say they've made some form of retirement contribution in the same time period.
Laurentian Bank announces the acquisition of AGF Trust by B2B Trust
MONTREAL, June 6, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - B2B Trust, a subsidiary of Laurentian Bank (TSX: LB), and AGF Management Limited (TSX: AGF.B), today announced that they have entered into an agreement under which B2B Trust will acquire 100% of AGF Trust Company ("AGF Trust") in a share purchase transaction. B2B Trust will acquire AGF Trust for a cash consideration corresponding to the net book value of the company at closing of approximately $242 million.