Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem takes part in a news conference at the Bank of Canada in Ottawa on December 15, 2020. Canada’s central bank will update its economic forecast for the country that will offer a window when it expects a recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic to take hold. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Bank of Canada keeps key interest rate target on hold at 0.25%

The central bank is citing the economic conditions and ongoing uncertainty

The Bank of Canada is keeping its key interest rate target on hold at 0.25 per cent.

The central bank is citing the economic conditions and ongoing uncertainty from the pandemic as reasons for its decision.

It also says that the earlier-than-anticipated arrival of vaccines has reduced economic uncertainty from “extreme levels.”

Still, the bank says today it expects the Canadian economy to contract in the first quarter of 2021.

The bank forecasts real gross domestic product will decline by 2.9 per cent in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period in 2020, before improving thereafter if severe restrictions start easing in February.

The bank is forecasting growth of four per cent this year, then 4.8 per cent next year, and finally 2.5 per cent in 2023.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 20, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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