Mortgage Rate Outlook
The Canadian five-year qualifying mortgage rate briefly moved higher in the third quarter, rising by ten basis points to 4.74 per cent before swiftly falling back to its historical low of 4.64 per cent. There are currently two primary sources of upward pressure on mortgage rates in the near term. The most immediate remains the stance of US monetary policy. The US Federal Reserve remains determined to raise its overnight rate this year, possibly as soon as its next meeting in September. While the Fed’s last rate increase had little impact on Canadian rates, the market may see a second tightening as a true shift in the Fed’s view toward future tightening.
In addition to pressure from potentially higher US rates, Canadian bank regulators have proposed stricter capital requirements to shift the burden of housing market risk away from taxpayers and onto financial institutions. That could in turn mean higher funding costs for banks and credit unions, which could be passed through to mortgage rates.
Overall, given those upward pressures, we anticipate that mortgage rates will rise from their current lows with the five-year qualifying rate reaching 5 per cent by the end of next year.
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