Canada column for Sunday, Aug. 20/17
THE CANADIAN REPORT
(c) By Jim Fox
Still-weak inflation could result in Canada’s central bank holding off further interest-rate increases.
While the rate of inflation advanced last month to 1.2 percent, it’s still below the Bank of Canada’s ideal target number of 2 percent.
The bank raised its key rate by 0.25 percent to 0.75 percent last month, suggesting inflation softness was mainly temporary.
After dipping to 1 percent in June, the lowest level in almost two years, the 4.6-percent higher prices for gasoline over a year ago were a large contributor to the July advance.
Other higher categories were natural gas, hotel and motel accommodations and home replacement costs.
There were lower prices for video equipment, furniture and internet access while the price for electricity in Ontario had its biggest drop in 14 years after the provincial government capped increases and prices.