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Business & Finance

Bank of Canada keeps key rate at 0.25pc, maintains QE policy

  • The central bank reiterated that rates would remain at their effective lower bound until economic slack is absorbed, with that not expected to happen until into 2023.
09 Dec, 2020

OTTAWA: The Bank of Canada left its key interest rate unchanged at 0.25pc, as expected, and said it would maintain its current policy of quantitative easing, in a regular rate decision statement on Wednesday.

The central bank reiterated that rates would remain at their effective lower bound until economic slack is absorbed, with that not expected to happen until into 2023.

The bank noted that the development of effective coronavirus vaccines was providing reassurance, though it said uncertainty remains around the global rollout of vaccination programs.

"No real surprises," said Andrew Kelvin, chief Canada strategist at TD Securities. "They are taking a wait and see approach on the impact of COVID (-19) on the economy this winter and on the roll out of vaccines."

The central bank said Canada's economic momentum heading into the fourth quarter appeared stronger than it had expected in October, but added that record levels of COVID-19 infections will weigh on growth in the first quarter of 2021.

The Canadian dollar was trading 0.2pc higher at 1.2785 to the greenback, or 78.22 U.S. cents, as vaccine hopes bolstered oil prices.

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