Selected Central Bank Rates, 2012 Mar 31


WEALTH Matters — spring 2012


Short term GIC rates continued their slow climb in the 1st quarter of 2012, since hitting a recent low in June 2011. One-year terms have regained their March 2011 post-recession high of 2%, but longer terms are still well below their year-earlier level.


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Interest Rate Trends

Investment Market Commentary

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Despite strong employment growth in both Canada and the US, a slower-growth outlook for Europe and China in particular limit inflation concerns, and reduce the need for rate increases on longer terms.

The Bank of Canada continues to signal its intent to gradually increase the bank rate if employment growth and economic growth continue to be strong and inflation remains near the 3% upper end of their target range. They continue to be constrained by the unprecedented low bank rate in the US (still at 0.25% since December 2008) and the recent rate reductions in many other countries in response to China’s intentional slowing of its economy, and the unintended slowing of European economies (see table below). We don’t expect the Bank of Canada to make any increases until near the end of 2012, and possibly not until mid 2013

Manulife Advantage Account

1.75% Daily Interest


Bank Savings Account

Average 0.25% Interest

Transfer Instructions by Phone or Internet

For many years we had been using ING Investment Savings Accounts for this purpose, but we have found that Manulife consistently pays higher interest rates, and offers additional benefits. We can set up an account for you in a matter of minutes with a simple application form. Please call us if you would like to find out more.

Several bond portfolios exist which seek the higher yields available outside europe and North America. Please let us know if you would like more information about these.

One of the easiest ways we have found to help compensate for the low rates is by offering high interest savings accounts that pay many times what the major banks do. Right now, you can earn 1.75% daily interest on your savings!

A Manulife Advantage Account is a virtual bank account that is linked to your regular chequing account. You can transfer your excess cash balances to your Advantage Account, earn 1.75% daily interest, and then transfer whatever you need back to your chequing account whenever you need it, with no service charge.

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