WHY SHOULD I CARE ABOUT THE BANK OF CANADA
It’s worth keeping an eye on.
A few times since we started this blog, we’ve mentioned the Bank of Canada and its leader.
There are some people who follow the Bank of Canada closely, but there are many who have never scanned the financial page of the newspaper. If you’re one of the latter, you might be asking, “Should I care about Mark Carney ?”
It’s great to learn about what Mark Carney does. He doesn’t have his fingers in your bank account directly, but as the Governor of the Bank of Canada, he holds some serious sway regarding the country’s economic policy.
It’s never a bad idea to read up on someone whose daily work includes affecting the buying power of the loonie. Whether or not you agree with the government’s political positions, Mr Carney’s policies have been recognized internationally as having shielded Canada from the worst effects of the recent debt crisis that so crucially damaged the United States and Europe.
That international recognition led to his appointment as the Chairman of the G-20’s Financial Stability Board — yeah, I know, “What the heck is that?” Take it from us, it’s a big deal.
In a nutshell, the Bank of Canada bank rate is a tool the government uses to stall or stimulate the economy. They can raise or lower it as a reaction to international situations (such as we saw with the recent recessions in Asia, the US and Europe) or for domestic reasons. Learning what it means to the average Canadian buying a home, however, is where we come in.
In the mean time, why not peruse the business section of the newspaper during your coffee break? We recommend reading that part first. (Don’t worry, the sports and comics will still be there when you’re done.)
Read books that talk about money — even with their flaws and obvious salesmanship, The Wealthy Barber and Rich Dad, Poor Dad must be applauded for making the average person comfortable with subjects of dollars and sense.
If you prefer online materials, check out video tutorials from Khan Academy. While there are a number of references to US-specific regulations, the simple explanations in Sal Khan’s YouTube tutorials are invaluable for people who want to develop or strengthen financial literacy.
We know, however, that there are a lot of people who just don’t want to know more, or perhaps don’t have the time to dedicate to learning a subject as deep and rich as economics. If you don’t have an appetite for reading the Financial Times, it becomes even more crucial to have someone in your corner who does care about Mark Carney and the Bank of Canada.
If you want to know more (or if you just want to know that we know more) please give us a shout and we’ll do our best to answer your questions. As for Mark Carney, his term as Governor of the Bank of Canada comes to an end in 2015.
Should you care? Only if you have money in a Canadian bank and/or pay Canadian taxes and/or do business with Canadian customers.