Bank of Canada to hold rates until at least early 2020 - Reuters Poll

According to the latest Reuters poll, a majority of the economists expect the Bank of Canada (BOC) to steer the monetary policy on a steady course for the balance of this year while calling on for a rate not until at least early 2020.

Key Findings:

“The April 12-16 poll of over 40 economists brings expectations for the BoC in line with those for the U.S. Federal Reserve and other major central banks, which are now forecast to stay on the sidelines this year.

All economists polled said the BoC will hold rates at 1.75 percent at its April 24 meeting and about 60 percent of them say they will stay there through to the end of this year.

The median forecast shows the central bank will hike in the first quarter of next year to 2.0 percent, but the sample was split. The rates are forecast to stay put after that through to end-2020.

Almost 90 percent of economists who answered an additional question said a rate cut was unlikely by end-2020 as they remain hopeful the economy will muddle through its current rough patch.

Gross domestic product (GDP) growth was forecast to average 1.6 percent this year and 1.7 percent next, a downgrade from 1.8 percent predicted for both those years in the January poll.

The median probability of a recession in the next 12 months was 20 percent, and 27.5 percent in the next two years. That compares with a 25 percent probability of a U.S. recession in the next 12 months and 40 percent chance in the next two years.”

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