Morneau doesn't foresee more measures to rein in mortgage risks

Finance Minister Bill Morneau got some ideas for his upcoming budget today from private sector economists.

Finance minister meets with private sector economists in Toronto to get their pre-budget advice

Canada's Finance Minister Bill Morneau is in the process of organizing the government's spending plans for the year via the budget. (AFP/Getty Images)

Finance Minister Bill Morneau got some ideas for his next federal budget today from private sector economists.

He sat down with the experts in Toronto, something federal finance ministers routinely do.

One topic the finance minister was asked about by journalists after the meeting was whether Canadians can expect more measures to influence the housing market.

Last year, the new government implemented a number of changes to mortgage regulations aimed at reining in risk. But there are no additional actions planned on that front at the moment, Morneau said.

"We continue to monitor the housing market to make sure the risks are appropriate for the market," he said.

"We don't have any measures under consideration at this stage, but we will continue to monitor to ensure the housing market is stable and that people are protected in their important investment."

Trump's impact

Another issue on the agenda was how Canada's economy will be affected by the presidency of Donald Trump, who will be inaugurated next week.

Morneau was cagey on the subject, noting that the government has yet to have any formal discussions with an administration that is not yet in power. But when the time comes, he says the focus will be on how the two countries "can continue and enhance our trade relationship."

Morneau stressed the longstanding and mutually beneficial relationship between the two countries will continue to be a base of any discussions moving forward.

"Canada is the number one export destination for 35 of the United States," Morneau said.

"That's providing critical impetus for U.S. jobs, and of course it's positive in Canada as well. So that will be the frame for our discussions."

With files from The Canadian Press and Reuters


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