HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK – Mar. 10/14
- Geopolitical tensions took center stage this week, as the crisis in Ukraine intensified with Russian forces taking control of Crimea – a semi-autonomous region of Ukraine. This caused a kneejerk reaction in global financial markets. However the sell-off ended as quickly as it began as the risk of outright military confrontation lessened.
- In addition to the international developments, there was also plenty of domestic economic news for markets to digest. Developments were moderately encouraging: real consumer income and spending showed resiliency, manufacturing ISM moved higher, and non-farm payrolls finally exceeded the market expectations, with the economy churning 175k new jobs.
- Alongside better data, this week also brought affirmation that unseasonably cold weather is to blame for weak economic activity at the start of the year. Taken together with improved data, this suggests that the economic picture is likely to get brighter as days get longer.
- All eyes were on Ukraine this week, as high tensions and mounting geopolitical uncertainty tempered global economic optimism heading into 2014.
- As was universally expected, the Bank of Canada held firm on its overnight rate, keeping it at 1.00%.
- Imports declined by 1.6% in January. Exports edged up by a marginal 0.2%, primarily on energy prices – in real terms, exports were down 5.3%.
- Employment contracted by 7K net new positions in February, surprising markets who had been expecting a 15K gain. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate held steady at 7.0%.
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