Bank of Canada hikes key interest rate 50 basis points for 2nd time in a row

The Bank of Canada on Wednesday raised its benchmark interest rate to 1.5 percent, its second straight increase of half a percent.

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The 50-point move was widely expected by economists, who predicted the central bank would raise rates for the third time this year in an effort to reduce high inflation levels.

Wednesday’s increase is the first time the Bank of Canada has raised rates by 50 basis points in back-to-back decisions in nearly 25 years.

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An initial rate hike of 25 basis points in March followed by 50 basis points in April has already had a cooling effect on the Canadian housing market as rising mortgage rates keep more buyers on edge.

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Some cities, including Toronto, saw a drop in sales and a drop in prices last month.

Statistics Canada said the annual inflation…

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