Interest Rates & Commodity Prices Surge on Economic Rebound Optism

General Angela Calla 26 Feb

Canadian 5-year Bond Yield Surges 

In an unprecedented move, bond yields are spiking around the world. Yields globally are now at levels last seen before the coronavirus spread worldwide. At the same time, commodity prices are surging, including energy, metals and minerals, agricultural products and lumber. The Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package is has triggered fears that if the US economy returns to full employment too quickly, inflation might be the result.

Central banks have attempted to soothe markets, with European Central Bank chief economist Philip Lane saying the institution can buy bonds flexibly. Fed Chair Jerome Powell called the recent run-up in yields “a statement of confidence” in the economic outlook. Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem told us earlier this week that it’s a long road to recovery for the Canadian economy. The Bank of Canada will continue to provide support every step of the way. Many Bay Street economists took this to mean that he reinforced the BoC’s commitment to keeping the policy rate at its effective lower bound of 25 bps until sometime in 2023.

These global developments have sideswiped Canada. On Tuesday, I warned that the 5-year government bond yield had risen 27 bps to 0.69% since the beginning of this month, shown in the first chart below. This morning, the rise has become exponential, hitting 1.00%, shown in the second chart and blown up to full size in the single chart below.

 

 

 

Keep in mind that Canada’s economy has considerable slack with unemployment rising in recent months and the lockdown continuing for at least a couple more weeks in the GTA. Moreover, Canada has fallen far behind other countries in the vaccine rollout. But there is no denying that pent-up demand in Canada is high. Not only have home sales been breaking records, but auto sales and anything housing-related–such as Home Depot earning growth–have skyrocketed.

Savings rates are high, and the big banks have reported a surge in deposit growth as consumers squirrel away those savings. Remember, the Roaring Twenties was a response to the 1918 Pandemic, more than anything else.

The CRB commodity price index, shown below, is on a tear, and the gains are in every sector except gold and orange juice. That means that new home construction costs are also rising, as home sales remain well above listings.

Bottom Line

It’s time to lock-in mortgage rates. For those in the market, preapprovals are prudent. Rising rates will likely trigger more housing activity in the near-term as those thinking of buying might move off the sidelines, pushing prices higher over the first half of this year.

The surge in interest rates would undoubtedly stall or reverse if we see a third wave of new variant Covid cases in advance of a full rollout of the vaccines in Canada. However, there is enough monetary and fiscal stimulus in global markets, and oil prices are expected to continue to rally sufficiently that an ultimate rise in interest rates cannot be far off. This is indicated by the loonie moving to a near a 3-year high.

Read the full article here by Dr. Sherry Cooper


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on “The Mortgage Show”, and is the best selling author of The Mortgage Code where all proceeds are donated to the YWCA.

Angela is a magazine contributor, speaker, and recently collaborated to publish her third book, Pursuit:365. In August of 2020, Angela surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37 and was recently awarded the 2020 Business Leader of the Year Award. Angela leads by example with passion and conviction, known as an industry expert and go-to source for media and publishers across the Country.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.

Fixed Interest Rates on the Rise | Cause for Concern?

General Angela Calla 26 Feb

Fixed rates and variable rates follow different economic indicators, fixed rates are based on the bond market and this is were we are presently seeing notable increases. The Bank of Canada is watching the housing market closely and while they don’t intend to raise rates, it is important to make your decisions with caution, as the circumstances change.

Bottom Line.

It’s time to lock-in mortgage rates. For those in the market, pre-approvals are prudent. Rising rates will likely trigger more housing activity in the near-term as those thinking of buying might move off the sidelines, pushing prices higher over the first half of this year. 

If you are shopping for a home?

Get a full pre-approval  (verification of credit, income and down payment) and stay in communication with your provider on your progress. Rates holds ranges from 90-120 days and some specials are only available for LIVE purchases with an accepted offer in place within the time frame of your pre-app.

If you have a renewal upcoming in the next year?

Time to secure an option, in the event rates continue to rise it may be better to renew early.

If you have debt outside your mortgage?

Such as credit cards, lines of credit or loans or require funds for a renovation, its prudent to review if you qualify to include that into a new mortgage to save money monthly and improve your cashflow to grow your wealth while rates are still very low.

The surge in interest rates would undoubtedly stall or reverse if we see a third wave of new variant COVID-19 cases in advance of a full rollout of the vaccines in Canada. However, there is enough monetary and fiscal stimulus in global markets, and oil prices are expected to continue to rally sufficiently that an ultimate rise in interest rates cannot be far off. This is indicated by the dollar moving to a near a 3-year high. For the full report click here:

If you or a loved one have mortgage questions, a  mortgage renewal upcoming or need access to your equity, please reach out to us directly by reaching out by calling 604-802-3983 or via e-mail at hello@countoncalla.ca and we are happy to help.

For more information on this, please follow this link to Dr. Sherry Cooper’s site.


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on “The Mortgage Show”, and is the best selling author of The Mortgage Code where all proceeds are donated to the YWCA.

Angela is a magazine contributor, speaker, and recently collaborated to publish her third book, Pursuit:365. In August of 2020, Angela surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37 and was recently awarded the 2020 Business Leader of the Year Award. Angela leads by example with passion and conviction, known as an industry expert and go-to source for media and publishers across the Country.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.

How Can Fluctuating Interest Rates Affect My Mortgage?

General Angela Calla 24 Feb

There’s a lot you need to know when navigating the world of mortgages. And, if you’re not careful, it’s quite easy to get tripped up in the lingo, the procedures, and the payments. (Not to mention the penalties.)

As is the case with most things in life, when it comes to locking in your mortgage interest rates, timing is everything.

How Can Fluctuating Interest Rates Affect My Mortgage?

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock throughout the COVID pandemic (no judgement here), you’ve likely noticed a lot of attention being paid to interest rates over the past 12 months.

Back in mid-July, Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem held a press conference in which he pledged that the Bank’s overnight lending rate of 0.25% would hold until the country’s inflation rate returns to its 2% target and achieves sustainably. That ‘hold’ could end up being years long.

As a result, homebuyers are enjoying access to historically-low interest rates that can easily translate into savings over hundreds of dollars per mortgage payment and thousands, if not tens of thousands, over longer fixed-terms.

So, what does all this mortgage interest rate movement mean for you? Well, that depends.

Fixed Rate Mortgages

Historically, fixed mortgage interest rates have always tended to drop slowly but increase quickly. Traditionally, when fixed rates went up, it was normally a quick occurrence and one that came without much warning to the everyday borrower, as lenders set rates based upon the commercial bond market. Looking back just to 24 months ago, client mortgages in early 2019 were getting locked in five-year fixed rates at 3.79% — and those were considered competitive rates.

In the last year, however, since COVID and the resulting economic fallout (see: precipitous drop in interest rates), home buyers have found fixed mortgage interest rates are now hovering around 2% on the same five-year fixed basis.

On a $500,000 mortgage, the difference between a five-year fixed at 3.79% and 2% would — as it looks — cut the interest portion of monthly payments nearly in half. (In this example, the total difference between these two rates in interest payments on a mortgage over a five-year term is just shy of $45,000.)

In other words, fixating on getting the right rate for your fixed-rate mortgage can result in a massive amount of savings over the next half-decade.

Variable Rate Mortgages 

Unlike fixed-rate mortgages, variable-rate mortgages move up and down according to the Bank of Canada rate. Variable-rate mortgages (also known as adjustable-rate mortgages) are quoted relative to a lender’s prime lending rate, which takes guidance from the Bank of Canada rate.

If you have a fixed-rate mortgage, you do not have to worry about the fluctuations until your term ends and you need to re-sign for another term. If you have a variable-rate mortgage, however, you should expect some ups and downs during your mortgage term — especially in turbulent economic times.

Given how low fixed-rate mortgage rates have dropped over the past 12 months, there isn’t much benefit to accepting the risk a variable-rate product carries with it. Which is to say, if you can lock in for five-years at the rate of inflation (or lower!), the security of doing so far outweighs the possible upside a variable-rate could offer you by going a few tenths of a point lower.

As such, we recommend fixed mortgage rate solutions throughout the current COVID climate.

Read the full article on Toronto Storeys


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on “The Mortgage Show”, and is the best selling author of The Mortgage Code where all proceeds are donated to the YWCA.

Angela is a magazine contributor, speaker, and recently collaborated to publish her third book, Pursuit:365. In August of 2020, Angela surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37 and was recently awarded the 2020 Business Leader of the Year Award. Angela leads by example with passion and conviction, known as an industry expert and go-to source for media and publishers across the Country.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.

 

 

Renewing a mortgage is SO much more than getting a rate quote and signing on the dotted line

General Angela Calla 24 Feb

Choosing the right mortgage type, and term for your mortgage will go a long way in helping you build and protect your wealth.

Beyond this snapshot in time of the actual renewal, if you want access to your home equity, you either have to pay a penalty to get out of it, or sell your home.

Working with a mortgage professional we can help guide you through these questions you should consider as your renewal approaches.

  1. Names on title: Are your relationships the same? Is there a guarantor to be removed?
  2. What are your future plans: Are you thinking of selling and moving up the property ladder?
  3. Income: Is your income consistent? Are you going on maternity leave, or is there new opportunity that will impact your cashflow?
  4. Mortgage type: What type of mortgage do you have? Total equity package, reverse, fixed and variable are some types.
  5. Future purchases: Avoid costly outside debt at higher rates that impact cashflow ( car, reno, loans, debt repayment)
  6. Tax Grants: Will you be making any renovations or deposits to a registered account improve your wealth beyond your mortgage?
  7. Emergency funds: If something unforeseen were to come up, like we all experienced together with the pandemic, do you have 6 months of an emergency fund to access?

Starting the conversation and connecting the dots on all those levels will help you avoid costly mistakes that can impact your cashflow, upset family life, or cause unnecessary financial stress.

If you or someone you care most about has questions about how to get the best mortgage renewal for their life stage, consult with us to get unbiased advise. Reach out to us at hello@countoncalla.ca and we’ll be happy to help you explore your options!


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on “The Mortgage Show”, and is the best selling author of The Mortgage Code where all proceeds are donated to the YWCA.

Angela is a magazine contributor, speaker, and recently collaborated to publish her third book, Pursuit:365. In August of 2020, Angela surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37 and was recently awarded the 2020 Business Leader of the Year Award. Angela leads by example with passion and conviction, known as an industry expert and go-to source for media and publishers across the Country.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.

 

Employees’ claims of sales pressure spark shareholder lawsuit against TD Bank

General Angela Calla 17 Feb

Bank says lawsuit is baseless and denies widespread culture of pressure-cooker sales

A class-action lawsuit against TD Bank alleges employees were pressured to drive up profits by selling customers services and products that were unsuitable or unnecessary.

A TD Bank teller who spoke out about the pressure to sell customers products and services they didn’t need says she feels vindicated a class-action lawsuit is now underway, shining a light on those allegedly unethical practices.

“It makes me know that I did the right thing, coming forward,” she told Go Public, after learning about the lawsuit.

She says she and her colleagues were pressured to make unnecessary sales in order to earn revenue for the bank — and to hold onto their jobs.

The class action was certified by a Quebec judge in April 2019, but TD only submitted its statement of defence earlier this week. The statement strongly denies the allegations of a widespread, unethical sales culture and says the lawsuit should be dismissed.

The teller was one of three TD employees who contacted Go Public in 2017, alleging relentless pressure to meet sales targets by doing things like signing up customers for credit cards, adding overdraft protection to customers’ accounts or moving them into more expensive chequing accounts.

“Speaking out felt like it was the only option we had at the time,” she said. CBC News is not naming her because she could lose her job.

These three TD Bank employees touched off a firestorm of reaction across the country when they spoke out about ‘incredible pressure’ to meet ‘unrealistic’ sales goals in March 2017. (CBC)

After the teller and her colleagues spoke out, hundreds of other current and former TD employees contacted Go Public with similar stories. They said they too felt pressured to behave unethically in order to meet sales targets and hold onto their jobs. In some cases, they even admitted to breaking the law to do it.

TD’s statement of defence calls the CBC News stories “vague, unsubstantiated” and “unverifiable.”

The legal action doesn’t come from TD customers who may have been upsold or misled.

Following Go Public’s reporting in March 2017, shares in Toronto-Dominion Bank posted their biggest loss since 2009 — plunging more than 5.5 per cent.

The lawsuit has been filed under the Quebec Securities Act and claims investors purchased TD stock based on “false and misleading statements” from TD Bank. Shareholders say they were not aware of the alleged internal pressure to sell products and services at any cost.

“This class action is not a direct hit on the practice of pressure selling, it’s indirect,” said Jasminka Kalajdzic, associate professor at University of Windsor’s faculty of law and the author of two books about class actions. “Investors are saying they wouldn’t have bought the stock if they’d known about the pressure to sell.”

‘TD was essentially profiting’  

The lead plaintiff works for Turn8 Partners, a Montreal-area portfolio management company. According to court documents, he purchased TD securities for an investment fund.

The documents say he was unaware of what is described in the originating application as TD’s “pressure selling program” and therefore acquired the securities at artificially inflated prices.

“We are arguing that TD said one thing and did another,” said Shawn Faguy, a Quebec lawyer who launched the suit and is representing the plaintiffs.

The court documents also show that TD spoke about delivering “a legendary customer experience” while being recognized as “an extraordinary place to work,” guided by ethics policies “that meet the highest standards of integrity, professionalism, and ethical behaviour.”

But, Faguy says, “at the end of the day, we argue TD was essentially profiting as much as it could off of its clients. And ultimately it created a work environment which put an extreme amount of pressure on its employees.”

In its defence, TD argues that those claims are untrue and points to numerous customer service awards the bank has received over many years, including ranking “highest in customer satisfaction among the big five retail banks,” in 2015 for the tenth consecutive year, according to the J.D. Power Canadian Retail Banking Customer Satisfaction Study.

TD further notes that its been repeatedly recognized for its workplace culture, noting that, in 2017, for the eighth consecutive year, it was “recognized as one of Canada’s best employers,” according to Aon Hewitt, a human resources consulting firm.

‘Unethical, illegal and predatory’

The thrust of Faguy’s argument is fuelled by several key TD documents included in the court file.

Of particular note is one released Dec. 3, 2015, which featured the financial performance of its Canadian retail business segment. Faguy says that document should have disclosed that the increase in retail revenue was driven by what he argues was “an unethical, illegal and predatory” employee sales target system.

“This clearly contains a misrepresentation,” said Faguy. “We say anyone who would have bought the stock after that period of time bought it with an artificially inflated price because of that misrepresentation.”

Because of that document — released to explain how TD recently performed, its financial condition and future prospects — the class action represents anyone who purchased TD securities between Dec. 3, 2015 and March 9, 2017, the day before TD’s stock value plunged.

It does not, however, cover stock traded on a U.S. exchange, which was part of a U.S. class action, which settled for over $13 million US.

Systemic problem?

Kalajdzic says the challenge in this class action will be to prove the alleged wrongdoing was widespread.

TD “can’t be faulted for whatever individual employees did,” she said. “Plaintiffs are going to have to show this was a bank-wide policy of making employees sell products that were not appropriate to customers.”

Faguy says that won’t be hard.

“It’s not like there is one branch in Montreal or one branch in Vancouver or one branch in Toronto where this was going on,” he said. “The sales revenue practices seem to be a systemic practice that was set up to try to drive revenue within the company across the country.”

In its statement of defence, TD argues it is “inconceivable” any unethical practices were systemic, pointing out that TD had over 81,000 employees engaging in Canadian retail activities at almost 1,200 branches in 2015.

After the initial Go Public stories, emails flooded in from employees of TD, Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal, CIBC and Scotiabank, describing pressure to hit sales targets that were monitored weekly, daily and in some cases hourly.

All five banks said in statements to Go Public that they act in the best interest of their clients and that employees are expected to follow codes of conduct.

The reports at the time prompted the banking regulator, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC), to launch a review of sales practices at Canada’s big banks.

It found that a sharp focus on sales may be increasing the risk of “mis-selling” to consumers — defined as selling products or services that may be unsuitable, that don’t take consumers’ needs into “reasonable” account or that involve incomplete or misleading information.

However, the FCAC’s review did not find mis-selling to be widespread, which TD points out in its class-action defence.

As for the first TD teller who spoke out, she says she’s grateful TD’s sales culture, and the alleged harm she says it caused, will be under scrutiny.

“Nothing will ever change,” she said, “if acknowledgement of bad behaviour isn’t addressed or punished.”

CBC News


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on “The Mortgage Show”, and is the best selling author of The Mortgage Code where all proceeds are donated to the YWCA.

Angela is a magazine contributor, speaker, and recently collaborated to publish her third book, Pursuit:365. In August of 2020, Angela surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37 and was recently awarded the 2020 Business Leader of the Year Award. Angela leads by example with passion and conviction, known as an industry expert and go-to source for media and publishers across the Country.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.

Port Coquitlam mortgage expert, Angela Calla, named Business Leader of the Year!

General Angela Calla 2 Feb

The Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce handed out its business excellence awards last Saturday, naming Angela Calla of the Port Coquitlam-based company, The Angela Calla Mortgage Team, as the top business leader for 2020.

Mortgage expert Angela Calla was named the Business Leader of the Year at last weekend’s gala honouring the best businesses and entrepreneurs in the Tri-Cities.

Calla, who leads The Angela Calla Mortgage Team, took the award for her work last year, at an online event hosted by Michael Hind of the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce.

The prize was previously won by Ryan Peterson of Finger Food Advanced Technology.

Butter Studios took the Business of the Year (1-10 employees) accolade while Ballistic Arts Media Studios won the Business of the Year (11-30 employees) and Rocky Point Ice Cream scooped the Business of the Year (30-plus employees) title.

The Not-For-Profit award was handed to the Immigrant Link Centre Society — a volunteer group launched in 2016 with the aim to prevent food waste — and Malik Malikzada of Jamila’s Kitchen and Grill took the Community Spirit award for their No Money, No Worries food program that he and his wife, Jamila, began in 2017; that program expanded in 2020 to include first responders and front line workers as well.

Meanwhile, Jessica Morrison of Squish Juicery was named the Tri-Cities’ Young Professional of the Year and Fulfill Shoppe won the Environmental Steward accolade for their online refill shop and their aim to reduce plastic and packaging waste.

Finally, the business resiliency awards — a new category in response to the pandemic — went to Legends Haul Supply and Novo Textiles while Chris Chong of Butter Studios was named the Chamber Member of the Year.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Chris continued to navigate the uncertain landscape by learning new skills and supporting the hardest-hit businesses in our backyard,” according to a Tri-CIties Chamber of Commerce statement. “Developing his filming and editing skills, Chris created short promotional videos for Tri-Cities retailers that were severely impacted by the pandemic. He also launched a fundraising campaign for an organization near and dear to his heart with the ‘Balance’ toilet paper print.”

Via TriCity News By: Janis Cleugh


Angela Calla is a 16-year award-winning woman of influence and mortgage expert. Alongside her team, Angela passionately assists mortgage holders in acquiring the best possible mortgage. She educates and empowers individuals on the “The Mortgage Show”, which she’s hosted for over a decade, and is the best-selling author of The Mortgage Code available on Amazon. All proceeds from her book sales are donated to the YWCA helping empower women and children in our community. Additionally, in August of 2020, she surpassed $1 Billion dollars in funded personal mortgage volume at the young age of 37.

Angela leads by example with passion and conviction. She is known as an industry expert on TV and radio and the go-to source for publishers across the Country. She has even been known to sing the national anthem at sporting events! On top of all her achievements, Angela finds the time to be a loving wife and mother of two beautiful children.

For media interviews, speaking inquiries, or personal mortgage assistance, please contact Angela at hello@countoncalla.ca or 604-802-3983.