The Financial Post reports in its Thursday edition that Canadians are so alarmed by the red-hot housing market that many say they would like to see the central bank raise the cost of borrowing to dampen demand. A Bloomberg dispatch to the Post says that 70 per cent of Canadians responding to a new Nanos poll said the sharp increase in home prices was a major problem for the economy. Almost half were at least somewhat in favour of the Bank of Canada raising its overnight rate to slow the rise, even though such a move would also increase the cost of credit lines, credit cards and other debt. While the property debate is often seen as young versus old, Nanos found that may not be the case. Even though 18 per cent of respondents 18 to 34 said they "support" increasing interest rates to slow the rise of housing prices, compared with 13 per cent of respondents over age 55, the older group was even more likely than the younger group to say they "somewhat support" an increase. "I think it's pretty clear to most people that housing in this country is all but out of control," BMO's Benjamin Reitzes said in a statement. "While it's nice to have an appreciating asset, it makes moving to the next home that much more expensive."
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