Archive for October, 2010

Opportunity Knocks in purchasing property in the US

Friday, October 15th, 2010

Opportunity for many Canadians to purchase American real Estate is becoming increasingly apparent as the Canadian dollar continues to rise against the American green back.  In the near future we could see the Canadian dollar as high as $1.15 to $1.20 US.   Contact me if your looking for real estate specialists in the sun belt areas as I have many contacts that can help you and answer many of your questions in purchasing real estate abroad.

Below is an excellent article on the advantages and dis-advantages of a rising loonie.

Is the Canadian dollar headed to US$1.20?

by Tom Fennell, Yahoo! Canada Finance
Thursday, October 7, 2010

A currency war is raging around the world as central banks attempt to keep their country’s exports competitive by letting the value of their nation’s money collapse.

The Canadian dollar (a.k.a the loonie) is one of the few exceptions and is rising in value almost daily against the falling U.S. dollar.

So where is the loonie, which just a few years ago was trading at US$0.62, headed in a world where most of its competitors seem determined to devalue their currencies?

Many leading analysts believe the dollar is actually at a crossroads that could see it shoot has high as US$1.20 over the next year.

On the one side, demand for Canadian exports like oil, copper and potash are rebounding.
And with Canada’s national finances and banking system in great shape compared to many countries, the loonie is increasingly in demand as a safe-haven currency.

And now as the value of the U.S. dollar continues to erode as the U.S. economy falters and Americans continue to borrow massively, it is putting upward pressure on the Canadian dollar as it climbs in value against it.

How far can the U.S. dollar fall?

Some analysts believe another round of stimulus spending in the U.S. with borrowed money or yet another massive deficit could trigger a precipitous fall in the greenback, and with it a corresponding rise in the value of the Canadian dollar.

The U.S. already owes $13 trillion, and the $1.3 trillion deficit it’s running this year is the largest in 65 years.

Ross Healy, CEO of Strategic Analysis Corp., appears to have made the right call when he predicted during an earlier up-leg in the value of the Canadian dollar that if the U.S. Federal Reserve continues to pump money into the economy, “I could make the case for the Canadian dollar going to US$1.20. It’s in the numbers.”

While not quite as bullish on the dollar as Healy, by this time next year, Patricia Croft, chief economist of RBC Global Asset Management, sees the Canadian dollar rising to US$1.15 due to tighter monetary policy in Canada, a fundamentally better fiscal position and stronger commodity prices.

Croft also says other forces are at work. The U.S. dollar, she believes, is headed into a long secular bear market that she says will occur as countries abandon the U.S. dollar for safer investments.

While the U.S. believes that China is triggering the currency war by deliberately undervaluing its currency to boost exports, Yu Yongding, the respected former advisor to the Bank of China got a lot of people’s attention last week when he said China should stop buying U.S. debt issues and diversify its massive foreign currency holdings.

The U.S., he said, is close to a full blown currency crisis, as debt levels in the world’s largest economy continue to climb to record levels.

“The situation is worsening day by day,” Yu said in a speech in Singapore. “We’re one step nearer to a U.S. dollar crisis.”

A surging loonie would be disastrous for Canada’s manufacturing sector, which according to the Canadian Auto Workers Union, has already lost hundreds of thousands of jobs.

And short of an outbreak of inflation a surging dollar would almost certainly keep Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney from raising interest rates. While he did not comment on interest rates directly, he told CNBC recently that “what goes on in the United States does have significant impact on Canada and we’re watching it very closely.”

Here is a list of advantages and disadvantages that will accompany a soaring loonie:


Canadians travelling abroad particularly to the U.S. will have their purchasing power dramatically increased, with an extra $15 to $20 to spend for every $100 they take with them.

Consumer goods

Just when you thought flat-panel TVs couldn’t get any cheaper electronics will continue to come down in price.

Cars and trucks

Canadian auto retailers will have to cut their prices to reflect the stronger dollar or risk losing customers to the U.S.


Any product made from oil and sourced in U.S. dollars will come down in price.

NHL hockey teams

When it comes buying players they’re suddenly more competitive.

Some things that won’t get cheaper with a high-flying loonie include:

U.S. equities

Canadian investors holding U.S. equities could see their profits wiped out by a higher Canadian dollar.

Companies selling to U.S. customers

Canadian manufacturers may not be able to pass along the cost of a higher dollar to their U.S. customers.

Forest products

The forestry sector, already hard hit by the multi-year decline in U.S. home construction, could be hurt again as the Canadian dollar prices them out of the American market.

Oil and gas

Energy is priced in U.S. dollars and all that crude flowing south won’t earn Canadian producers as much.

What a weird MARKET!! “Local luxury-home sales up 26 per cent from last year,” ReMax says

Friday, October 8th, 2010

Below is an article in the Edmonton Journal regarding the luxury market in Edmonton.

While homebuying activity is cooling in Edmonton, luxury-home sales are picking up, says a new national report by ReMax.

“One area of the market that has outperformed all others is the upper end,” said the ReMax Market Trends Report Fall 2010, released Tuesday.

Sales of homes priced at more than $700,000 are up 26 per cent over 2009, with 240 upscale properties changing hands as of August, compared with 190 in the same period last year, it said.

Fifty-five homes in the Edmonton area sold for more than $1 million in the first eight months of the year.

The urgency seen earlier this year in Edmonton’s residential housing market — prompted by tighter lending policies and the threat of higher interest rates — has given way to more stable conditions heading into the fourth quarter, the report said.

“Positive announcements in the oil and gas sector should spur renewed activity in residential real estate — as evidenced in the first few weeks of September,” it said.

“Despite recent hikes, interest rates remain attractive, with a five-year closed hovering at four per cent. The outlook for the remainder of the year is stable, with no real fluctuations in either sales or price.”

Year-to-date sales have slipped 14 per cent to 11,773 units, compared with 13,694 in the same period last year, the report said.

The sales-to-listing ratio is now 47 per cent, down from 59 per cent in 2009, but up from 42 per cent in 2008.

Average price is holding steady, up about four cent to $332,789 in 2010. That’s about $12,500, or 3.9 per cent, higher than a year ago, when the residential average was $320,289, the report said.

Inventory levels are up marginally over last year, but down from peak levels reached in 2007 and 2008, ReMax said.

“As a result, the housing market has been characterized as balanced, slightly favouring the buyer,” the report said.

First-time buyers in Edmonton remain most active, driving sales of single-family homes between $250,000 and $350,000. Condos represent 34 per cent of residential sales.

An influx of new units recently has pushed up supply, putting downward pressure on condo prices, the report said.

Tighter lending rules, requiring a 20-per-cent down payment, are “proving to be detrimental to investment activity.”

The report, which covered trends and developments in 19 major centres from January to August, found year-to-date sales ahead of 2009 levels in 11 markets.

Prices were up year-over-year in all cities, with five experiencing double-digit gains in 2010: Vancouver, St. John’s, Sudbury, Winnipeg and the Greater Toronto Area.

“We cleaned up in the first quarter of 2010 because housing activity during the same period one year earlier was dismal,” said Elton Ash, regional executive vice-president of ReMax, Western Canada.

“We’re now comparing the second half of the year to 2009 and falling short of expectations. Looking at the big picture, however, the market remains healthy.”

Read more:


Michael Pino (Edmonton Luxury Properties), Re/Max Elite
#17, 8103-127 Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta, T5Y 3K6
Tel: 780-406-4000   Cell: 780-238-8912   Fax: 780-761-4433   Email: Click Here
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