The Globe and Mail reports in its Thursday, Oct. 28, edition that the Bank of Canada is ending its quantitative easing program and moving forward its timeline for potential interest rate hikes.
The Globe's Mark Rendell writes that the BOC kept its policy interest rate at 0.25 per cent on Wednesday. It said it could start raising the benchmark rate in the "middle quarters of 2022," opening up the possibility of a rate hike as early as April. Previously, the BOC said it would not hike rates before the second half of 2022.
It also announced the end of its quantitative easing program.
The changes put the BOC ahead of most major central banks in withdrawing stimulus. Mr. Rendell says the strength and persistence of consumer price growth in recent months has caught monetary authorities by surprise.
Governor Tiff Macklem says: "We will be considering raising interest rates sooner than we previously thought. Interest rates don't need to be as low for as long to get that full recovery and get inflation back."
The pace of annual consumer price index growth has been above the BOC's 1-per-cent-to-3-per-cent target range since April, hitting an 18-year high of 4.4 per cent in September.
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