FFFA! income, rates & debt people

It’s that time of the week again!

Let’s get to our regular Friday Free-for-all post, this is our traditional end of the week news roundup and open topic discussion thread for the weekend.

Here are a few recent links to kick off the chat:

BC income growth worst in Canada
Why rate cut may not drop mortgages
Bankers keep filling the punchbowl
The Okanagon oil link
The British Columbia oil link
Recession? Again?!
Owners ask for reduced valuations

So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes here and have an excellent weekend!

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Todays FP:”Stampede to sell houses in Calgary underway as new listings, inventory soar”

Looks like this is the beginning of a blood bath.

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@128 – There was flooding, but the dykes in Steveston weren’t breached. The areas that flooded, Britannia Shipyards and Garry Point, aren’t behind the dyke.

Bull! Bull! Bull!

@114 – the dykes in Steveston were breached in the fall when we had the massive rainfall coupled with the “king” tide. The heritage houses by the cannery were flooded as well as other areas.


then again maybe the powers that be are positioning themselves for a major $hitstorm? perhaps realizing they can’t stop it, they can at least take some credit for making some sort of an effort to get in front of it.



@ #122

things could/will change once the election is over. remember all the promises and hot air from previous yrs? it is no surprise that they’re saying all the things we want to hear right now. i’d expect nothing less. caveat emptor.



@Joe Mainlander – but even this still makes George just upset, I mean really upset and hurt, about how his beloved Euro white dominated city is turning into. It’s just heart wrentching for him!! Even his submissive Asian me luv u long time mistresses/girlfriends can’t help him overcome this grief!!

It’s just so sad for him…

Joe Mainlander

Re: 121 et al. Actually, the lower strata of Vancouver (City # 3) is primarily immigrant and non-white, while the top strata (City #1) is still mostly white. From “Divisions and Disparities in Lotus-Land: Socio-Spatial Income Polarization in Greater Vancouver, 1970-2005, David Ley & Nicholas Lynch” “The sharpest distinctions in the variables we have examined so far involve immigration and ethnic status. City #1, comprising the most privileged metropolitan neighbourhoods, is over- whelmingly the home of the native-born and this plurality (72 percent) has not eroded at all be- tween 1971 and 2006. In contrast, there has been a marked increase in immigrants in the remainder of Metro Vancouver, and especially in City #3, which has shifted from a majority native-born (76 percent) in 1971 to an immigrant majority (51 percent) in 2006. Reflecting the ethnic status of immigrants to… Read more »


….Never under estimate the value of a good realtor!….

“good realtor”: oxymoron (not surprising since the RE cartel is made up of morons).

@Longtime lurker

The rate cut is an election ploy. The banks will help out the Conservatives by lowering the variable rate JUST BEFORE the campaign is called. It will appear that the government is onside with consumers. The sheeple will buy it and lead to another majority government.


@George – So basically you want everyone to turn European and isn’t happy that: 1 – Not enough immigrants are doing it 2 – Asians are growing faster than Europeans in this city and the culture influence is leaning towards Asia rather than Europe 3 – Why can’t everything just stay the same as before when Europeans rule the city, and Asians only took the undesirable jobs with only a token representitive in medicine/law/etc who don’t know anything about their heritage, so we can point to them and say “hey we are multi-cultural, not racist, cuz look at this 1 Asian doctor we have!” Doesn’t feel good when fotunes are reversed and you aren’t the alpha dog anymore? It sucks that those small yellow people can *gasp* buy houses in West Side that you always feel you deserve? Maybe you… Read more »


@Spaceman889 – China is an extremely divide society with basically 3 layers – the corrupted politicians and well connect businessmen, the extremely skilled with in demand skills, and everyone else. Everyone else makes very little money. The extremely skilled that makes global wages are probably 10 to 15% of the workforce and traditionally have been ex-pats or foreigners, and that’s part of the reason why foreign degrees like UBC still holds some prestige and why a lot of people want to send their kids out for foreign studies – way way way less competition to get in (though foreign univ are much tougher than domestic univ study from what I’ve been told) and hopefully come home with extra edge than domestic univ grads. I know quite a few old classmates that were making $80K/$100K/year here that went back to start… Read more »


@Spaceman889 – Thanks…yes, I do get upset sometimes as I can’t understand why so many supposedly smart/rational people would feverently vote up posts like BPOM on subject which they know nothing about, yet when people who have actual personal experience posts something that disagree with their pre-existing believe, they yell and scream at those posters as heretics that needs to be lynched by the mob. Maybe the deeply repressed regret of being wrong, and hate of missing out on owning their own house and having to move, and maybe even resulting relationship breakup is getting too much to hold it in anymore. They obviousl to afraid to do what they really want – lynch and harm who they perceive to be responsible for their current situation, and so instead act out in the only way they can – vote up… Read more »


@crikey – Don’t like what’s reflected back in the mirror?? 🙂


@113: “Its a question of the lesser of two evils. The overall consequences of low rates are probably better than the overall consequences of a recession or deflation.”

It doesn’t have to be the lesser of two evils. The Federal government could restrict mortgage lending to counteract any lowering of BoC rates. Non-mortgage lending isn’t really the issue as a quarter or a half percent off a double digit rate isn’t going to enable significantly more borrowing.

The Feds obviously want consumer debt to keep rising as it’s the only cylinder the economy is still running on.

Long Time Lurker

I see many posts here that allude to Garth Turner. He constantly cites worries about deflation in Canada and that everything must be done in order to prevent that scenario. So lets see what this deflation is all about. 1) It can’t be Commodities since their pricing is at a 12 year low. Everything from Oil, Iron Ore, Copper, Natural Gas, etc has already deflated. 2) Consumer Goods. These prices in Canada are determined by the Canadian dollar vs the source country of imports. We import most goods from Asia and the USA and our currency is down vs them. Therefore no deflation there. The USA should be more worried about deflation (higher currency + lower commodity prices) yet they are going to raise rates. So no deflation worries there. 3) Domestic services; Telecom, Airlines, Retail Oil, Banks, etc have… Read more »


If I recall correctly, all recent tsunami warnings have been issued for western Vancouver Island, not Richmond.


“The flood risk associated with Richmond has to do with tsunamis or more likely the Fraser River flooding and breaching the dykes.”

Hmm. When is the last time any of these things happened to Richmond?


“The Bank of Canada’s surprise cut to borrowing costs this week threatens to tilt an already lopsided economy into one that is grotesquely skewed toward housing and consumer spending, said Bank of Montreal’s Doug Porter.”

Its a question of the lesser of two evils. The overall consequences of low rates are probably better than the overall consequences of a recession or deflation.

If it looks likely that housing will overheat too much such that it threatens the economy as a whole, the Department of Finance has and other government departments have tools to cool it down.


“Bank of Canada’s rate cut could backfire to create ‘grotesque’ debt skew in economy”, Financial Post


“The Bank of Canada’s surprise cut to borrowing costs this week threatens to tilt an already lopsided economy into one that is grotesquely skewed toward housing and consumer spending, said Bank of Montreal’s Doug Porter.”

“Until two days ago, the Ottawa-based Bank of Canada held its benchmark interest rate at 1% for more than four years even in the face of a housing market that some analysts and policymakers said was at risk of overheating. Negative real interest rates — where borrowing costs are lower than the inflation rate — may spur consumers to borrow more, exacerbating household debt levels that hit a record last year.”

The Patriots Bias

Patriotz, George is right. The post in question is alluding to a Vancouver being once an European city and now taking on more of an Asian character. But you twist words…and sound like that Garth guy (worst PROVEN track record).

What dept do you work for in Ottawa?


I tried to post about the $1.7 Billion Money Launderer on Garth’s blog, but he wouldn’t let it through


The reason why Richmond didn’t flood over the weekend is because the flood was caused by heavy rain falling directly over this region. Richmond was spared by the brunt of the storm. The flood risk associated with Richmond has to do with tsunamis or more likely the Fraser River flooding and breaching the dykes. The Fraser River flooding and breaching the dykes in Richmond isn’t going to happen because of a weekend of heaving rain over the Lower Mainland. The Fraser River flood will happen in late Spring when the snow in the interior is melting and feeding the Fraser River and its tributaries. It’s worse when there is rapid rise in temperatures so the snow in the interior mountains all melts at onece. Combine that with heavy rain anywhere over the Fraser Basin (it doesn’t have to even be… Read more »