Oliver responds to calls for more housing regulation

Oliver responds to calls for more housing regulation

Oliver responds to calls for more housing regulation Joe Oliver responded to the critics calling for more active participation from the minister in reining in housing industry and cooling mortgage rates.

“I don’t think it’s the role of government to set interest rates or rates for mortgages,” Oliver said on Business News Network Wednesday. “The rates are quite low and they’ve been coming down but a very small amount.”

Oliver expounded on his position by noting that CMHC has forecasted a soft landing and that the government will continue to monitor the market while also reducing the level of influence it will have going forward.

“We don’t believe that there’s a major problem at this point,” Oliver said.

When asked by BNN reporter, Chitra Nawbatt, whether the Canadian government has engaged in back-room talks with private lenders about not dropping rates further Oliver said “we are not intervening in the market directly or indirectly.”

 Oliver’s response was indirectly aimed at one industry player who recently called for the finance minister to take a more active approach to reigning in the mortgage rate wars that have been taking place this spring.

“The old finance minister never would’ve allowed mortgage rates to go down,” Sadiq Adatia, chief investment officer at Sun Life Global Investments said in an interview at Bloomberg’s office in Toronto Tuesday, according to Business New Network. “He would’ve stepped up to do his part. The new one is more hands-off, and that’s actually a mistake.”

Oliver said that through CMHC the government is gradually tightening rules and reducing the government involvement, which he view as “prudent both for the market and to protect Canadian tax payers."
  • Dustan Woodhouse 2014-06-13 1:33:49 PM
    Canada is a Free Market Country. As such I suspect most CDN's do not wish to have the Government interjecting into the private market with price controls which artificially 'protect' the consumer from low rates while simultaneously fattening Corporate profits further at the homeowners expense.

    With respect, Mr. Adatia's position seems contrary to the very essence of our system.

    Price Controls do not work, they cause larger problems which one need not look far into history to see.

    With stringent qualifying criteria already in place Mortgage Debt is hardly the issue. The arrears rate continues to fall, now at 0.31%. 99.69% of CDN's do not miss mortgage payments.

    Where are the record low rates for consumer debt? Where are the tighter guidelines for consumer debt?

    Housing needs to cease being the whipping boy in these conversations.

    Dustan Woodhouse
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  • Amber Moser 2014-06-13 2:59:24 PM
    By continuing to tighten criteria for mortgage lending the government is still stepping into the mortgage market. I agree with Dustin Woodhouse that consumer debt is more of an issue than mortgage debt. People always need some place to live but do they really need the brand new car or high heeled shoes?
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  • Silly Rabbit 2014-06-13 4:28:51 PM
    Go after the banks with their credit cards at 19% and $20k limits for 24 year olds....
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