Again, for the fourth straight announcement, the Bank Of Canada has left the benchmark interest rate unchanged at 1.75%. The last rate change was in October 2018, which was the fifth time since the summer of 2017 that the BoC had decided to raise the rate. This was the first announcement that did not include any mention of a need for future increases, which signals that the BOC is in no hurry to move the rate (unlike past announcements where it was mentioned). The BOC is projecting growth of only 0.3% in the first quarter of 2019, with a slightly more positive projection on the second quarter.
What does this mean? The BoC’s rate directly affects the rate that you will get from a retail bank for lending (mortgages and lines of credits) and savings products. When the rate is low, it means that it is cheaper to borrow money, but not as lucrative to save.
The BoC has eight fixed dates each year on which it announces whether or not it will change the policy interest rate. The announcement dates are January 9th, March 6th, April 24th, May 29, July 10, September 4th, October 30th, and December 4th.