Exceptional strength in the housing market during the pandemic is underpinning Canada’s economic recovery. However, two key vulnerabilities—housing market imbalances and elevated household indebtedness—have intensified.
The TSX index rose by 9.5 percent in November 2020, adding large gains to an already sharp V-shaped recovery. The economic outlook improved at that time as well. We ask whether the stock market gains since last autumn are due to improving forecasts of firms’ earnings.
The Canadian non-bank financial intermediation (NBFI) sector saw strong growth in 2018 and 2019. In 2020, COVID‑19 caused a financial shock. We provide a preliminary analysis on the impact of COVID‑19 on the sector as well as an update on its growth.
We construct an index that systematically measures and tracks the stringency of government policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic across Canadian provinces. Researchers can use this stringency index to analyze how the pandemic is affecting the economy.
We show that a small number of authorized participants (APs) actively create and redeem shares of US-listed fixed-income exchange-traded funds (FI-ETFs). In 2019, three APs performed 82 percent of gross creations and redemptions of FI-ETF shares. In contrast, the group of active APs for equity ETFs was much more diverse.
Unexpected changes in interest rates lead small firms to materially change their investment rate. Large firms, in contrast, show a smaller response. This suggests both that financial conditions are an important channel for transmitting monetary policy and that firm characteristics can help us better understand fluctuations in business investment.
After COVID-19, we expect potential output growth to stabilize around 1.2 percent. This is lower than the 2010–18 average growth of 1.8 percent. Relative to the April 2019 reassessment, the growth profile is revised down. Given the unknown course of the pandemic, uncertainty around these estimates is higher than in previous years.
The neutral rate of interest is important for central banks because it helps measure the stance of monetary policy. We present updated estimates of the neutral rate in Canada using the most recent data. We expect the COVID-19 pandemic to significantly affect the fundamental drivers of the Canadian neutral rate.
The Bank of Canada launched the Bankers’ Acceptance Purchase Facility (BAPF) to ensure that the bankers’ acceptance (BA) market could continue to function well during the financial crisis induced by the COVID‑19 pandemic. We review the impact that the announcement of this facility had on BA yields in the secondary market. We find that BA yield spreads declined by 15 basis points on the day of the announcement and by up to 70 basis points over a longer period. Using an econometric framework, we quantify the effect of the announcement and confirm early assertions presented in the Bank’s 2020 Financial System Review.
Between February 19 and March 23, 2020, the Canadian stock market plunged due to the severe economic impact of COVID-19. By the end of the summer, the stock market had already recovered a significant portion of its losses, leaving many asking if investors see the economy through rose-coloured glasses. Despite these concerns, we find that current market valuations for companies on the Toronto Stock Exchange align well, on average, with the declines in earning forecasts observed since the start of the year. We also find these market valuations are consistent with the discount rate returning to its pre-pandemic level.