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Industry News

 The Canadian housing and mortgage markets receive extensive attention by economists, analysts and the media. The purchase of a home, after all, is the largest financial commitment that an individual will make in his or her lifetime.


Since 2008 and the height of the financial crisis, the federal government has been active from a policy perspective in making sure that the housing market does not overheat or enter what some describe as a “bubble”. It has done this for two reasons. First, interest rates have remained stable, indeed at record lows, for five years. Rising interest rates would in and of themselves moderate housing activity. This variable is absent.


But secondly, the government is concerned about its exposure to the real estate finance system. Or, to be more political, the exposure of the Canadian taxpayer to the housing market. In a way, this does not have anything to do with whether the housing market is up or down or whether resales have hit a record high or a record low. It has to do with the role of the federal government in backing various financial mechanisms that support the mortgage market. It wants to reduce its exposure in the mortgage market and, by extension, to increase the role of the private sector.


Click here to read the full A clear mortgage policy opinion piece in the Financial Post from CAAMP President & CEO Jim Murphy.


It has been five years since Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy put the financial system on the brink of collapse.


To get the inside story on Canada’s journey through the storm, the Globe and Mail spent months interviewing the CEOs, central bankers and politicians who navigated the Canadian economy through the turbulent waters. A plain text version as it appeared in the print edition of Report on Business can be found here.


To enhance the experience, click here to take an interactive walk through the same narrative, but with a rich multimedia experience including audio, video and graphics. To get the full story, be sure to watch and listen to the clips.


Canada is on its “way home” to more natural economic growth as central banks prepare to reverse nearly six years of low-interest rate fuel, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz says.


Making just his second public speech since taking over from Mark Carney in June, Poloz said today the key pieces of a more normal and self-sustaining economy are falling into place.


“We are now close to the tipping point from improving confidence into expanding capacity,” Poloz said in notes prepared for a speech to members of the Vancouver Board of Trade.


Most economists don’t expect the Bank of Canada to start raising its key overnight rate – fixed at 1% since September 2010 – until late 2014 or even 2015.


Click here for the full Globe and Mail article.


Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says he will step in to intervene once more if the housing market appears to move toward a bubble.


“I’m comfortable with where we are, but we have to watch and, if we see anything moving toward a bubble, we can intervene,” Flaherty said in an interview with BNN Television this week. “It’s calming, which is good, especially the condo market, which was quite worrisome in Vancouver and Toronto, and a little bit in Montreal also,” he continued.


Home sales rose across Canada for August year-over-year – bolstered in large part by significant jumps in Canada’s two largest housing markets.


Ontario reported a 10.6% uptick in August sales, year-over-year and an average price increase of 5.7%. Not to be outshone, British Columbia reported a 28.6% increase in sales activity and an 8.6% jump in average prices.


Click here to read more from


Three out of five homeowners are saddled with mortgages. But in many ways it’s harder being a renter.


Statistics Canada finds that a significantly larger percentage of renters are overextended than homeowners in this country.

That’s one of the more noteworthy findings in its National Household Survey data released last week.


Click here to read more from


Purchasing a home is a major accomplishment, but paying off your mortgage as early as possible will be the best investment you can make.


A 2010 CMHC survey indicated that 68% of recent homeowners felt there was a strong chance they could pay off their mortgage earlier than their current amortization schedule, and 27% have either made additional lump-sum mortgage payments or have increased their regular payment amounts.

Ready to save some serious money? Click here for a few easy ways you can pay off your mortgage faster courtesy of Canadian Living.

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