BoC GOVERNOR: GET USED TO LOW LOONIE

Jan 07, 2016

By Bob Komsic

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As Canada continues struggling with falling commodity prices, the head of the country’s top bank has a simple message – get used to a low loonie and some inflation.
stephen poloz
In a speech Thursday at Ottawa city hall, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz says there’s no simple solution, add the only option appears to be to ride it out.
“There’s simply nothing that a policy maker can do about the price of oil.  Price of oil has gone down and so the adjustments that are thrown up by that simply have to happen.”
The central bank boss believes it could take three to five years for the economy to adjust to the new reality of a lower commodity price world.
And for the first time he’s quantified the cost of lower commodity prices and higher import prices.
Poloz says it’s draining $50-billion a year from the economy.
That’s $1,500 for every Canadian.
He adds he’s prepared to live with a bit more inflation, which he insists is mainly temporary, and does not seem inclined to raise interest rates to ease the inflation pressures.
That in his view would cause more damage to the economy.
The central bank governor’s remarks have economists wondering whether the bank will cut its key interest rate when it makes its next announcement on January 20.
As for what’s going on in China, Poloz is playing down the implications for Canada and dismisses fears of a global race to devalue currencies.
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