January 21, 1957

HOUSING

N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE


Hon. Robert H. Winters (Minister of Public Works): Mr. Speaker, I should like to inform hon. members of the decision to increase the maximum interest rate on insured loans under part I of the National Housing Act from 5J per cent to 6 per cent. A similar increase of one-half of 1 per cent will take place with respect to the rates applicable to other types of loans under the act. The statute authorizes the governor in council to fix the maximum rate of interest that may be charged for various types of loans. In respect of insured mortgage loans, the interest rate cannot exceed the yield on long-term government securities, plus 2J per cent as of the time the rate is fixed. The National Housing Act maximum rate was increased from 5| per cent to 5] per cent in March last year. During 1956, and particularly in the later months, the large capital investment program has increased the competition for investable funds and general interest rates have risen. In face of this exceedingly great demand for funds, the flow of mortgage moneys to housing particularly under the National Housing Act has diminished in the last quarter of 1956 and the rate of house building has reflected this. The program for the year 1956 was nevertheless impressive. There was a new record of 135,000 completions. More than 125,000 homes were started and there were 70,000 houses under construction on January 1, 1957. The present increase in the National Housing Act interest rate is designed to place would-be borrowers under the act in a better position to compete for a fair share of available mortgage funds in the year ahead. The new rates will have application to all undertakings to insure that will be issued by Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation on and after tomorrow, January 22, 1957.



On the orders of the day:


PC

George Harris Hees

Progressive Conservative

Mr. George H. Hees (Broadview):

I should like to direct a question to the Minister of Public Works. What effect does the minister expect from the announcement he has just

made with regard to the construction of houses in Canada this year? What number of starts and what number of completions does the department expect this year?

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
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LIB

Robert Henry Winters (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. Winters:

Mr. Speaker, it is a little early in the year to give a specific forecast but I do anticipate that funds will be encouraged to enter the field of housing which were not being made available for borrowers, particularly under the National Housing Act. I anticipate that banks and other lending institutions will now be encouraged to make more loans under that act.

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
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PC

George Harris Hees

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Hees:

A supplementary question. Has the minister's department not made an estimate of the number of starts and completions in the housing field which will take place this year?

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
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LIB

Robert Henry Winters (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. Winters:

We try to ensure that there will be a high level of house building activity.. That is part of government policy and this step is designed to ensure that there will be a high level of house building activity through 1957.

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
Permalink
CCF

Alistair McLeod Stewart

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Alistair Stewart (Winnipeg North):

should like to address a supplementary question to the Minister of Public Works. Are we entitled to assume, in view of the increase of almost 10 per cent in mortgage interest rates, that this is the government method of helping low income groups to own their own homes?

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
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LIB

Robert Henry Winters (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. Winters:

Mr. Speaker, it is an attempt on the part of the government to make it easier for people of modest income to acquire cheaper money than is available to them in the conventional lending markets and, moreover, to acquire houses with lower down payments.

Topic:   HOUSING
Subtopic:   N.H.A. LOANS ANNOUNCEMENT OF INCREASE IN INTEREST RATE
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IMMIGRATION

C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL


On the orders of the day:


PC

George Randolph Pearkes

Progressive Conservative

Mr. G. R. Pearkes (Esquimalt-Saanich):

Mr. Speaker, may I ask the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration if he has any further report to give the house regarding the appeal of Christian G. Hanna to become domiciled in this country?

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration)

Liberal

Hon. J. W. Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration):

Mr. Speaker, I am not sure whether the appeal has yet been dealt with, and I cannot give a statement today.

Inquiries of the Ministry

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. J. G. Diefenbaker (Leader of the Opposition):

Mr. Speaker, I would like to

direct a supplementary question to the minister. Does he not consider that in this case humanitarian considerations should have priority over departmental adherence to the letter of the law being stubbornly upheld? This is the type of question in which I submit the minister might well give consideration to those humanitarian things that affect mankind. I should like to suggest further that in view of the United Nations having taken this matter under advisement-according to the press of today which reports an interview with Dr. Humphrey-and regardless of any decision that is made, this man should not be moved out of Canada until the United Nations has had an opportunity to consider the matter.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration)

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

Mr. Speaker, I had always understood that the hon. gentlemen objected to government by order in council. We are carrying out the law made by this parliament.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
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PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

The minister has power under the act to do by order in council that which is sought. When the minister talks about adhering to the law of the land, let me tell him that two courts have decided in other cases that he has not done that.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration)

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

The minister has no power; the power resides in the governor in council. The hon. gentleman knows that as well as anyone else.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
Permalink
PC

John George Diefenbaker (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Diefenbaker:

Is not that an order in council?

Topic:   IMMIGRATION
Subtopic:   C. G. HANNA REQUEST FOR STATEMENT ON APPEAL
Permalink

January 21, 1957