The Globe and Mail reports in its Saturday edition that Canadian households are seeing their wealth rise at a record-setting pace, bolstered by torrid activity in residential real estate and continuing gains in the stock market. The Globe's Matt Lundy writes at on a cumulative basis, household net worth jumped 6 per cent in the first quarter to $13.7-trillion, Statistics Canada said Friday. That is the largest increase on record. Over the past year, household wealth has surged by $2.4-trillion or 22 per cent, an unparalleled rally for assets, despite the disastrous impact of COVID-19 on the broader economy. The crisis response -- massive fiscal stimulus, along with rock-bottom interest rates -- has kept household balance sheets in good shape, while encouraging a lot of borrowing. Government income supports are nearing their expiration dates. "Canadian household finances improved in the first quarter of this year," said Bank of Montreal economist Priscilla Thiagamoorthy in a report. "Although the growth of mortgage debt could continue to slow in the coming quarters, the flow remains elevated. As such, housing-market imbalances and still-high household debt remains a key vulnerability to the Canadian economy."
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