HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK – April 18th
• Investors were treated to a mixed bag of U.S. economic data this week. Retail sales for March (-0.3%) and industrial production for February (-0.6%) came in on the soft side, but weekly jobless claims for the week of April 9th fell to a 43 year low, suggesting ongoing job market strength.
• Consumer price inflation decelerated in March to 0.9% (from 1.0%). The core rate also edged down to 2.2% (from 2.3%). While inflation is unlikely to surge in the months ahead, the combination of higher energy prices, a weaker U.S. dollar, and a tighter job market should nudge it closer to the Fed’s target over the next year, sufficient to ensure a continued gradual pace of monetary tightening.
• Crude oil prices hit a five-month high of US$42 per barrel this week, with the Canadian dollar – which topped
78 US cents – and stock market following suit.
• The Bank of Canada left interest rates on hold and revealed a cautious outlook for near term economic
growth. Economic activity is expected to advance at a 1.7% clip in 2016, with a weaker export profile offset by fiscal stimulus.
• Manufacturing sales slid 3.3% in February, following three months of sizable gains. In real terms, the decline was a slightly more modest 2.0%.
• Existing home sales broke all previous monthly records, rising 12% y/y in March. Prices were up by 16% y/y.
For further information, please contact:
John Maveety Manager, Residential Mortgages – Greater Ottawa Area TD Canada Trust
T: (613) 371-1984 F: (888) 899-1984 P: (866) 767-5446