TORONTO, Jan 18 (Reuters) - Below are some key quotes from an appearance by Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz in Ottawa:
“Was the Bank on track to hike interest rates (before the U.S. election)? No.”
“Back in October we identified a number of things which were raising uncertainty beyond the normal level of uncertainty that we would normally deal with and so at that point we decided we did not have sufficient information to take further monetary action at that time, given those uncertainties. And I’m arguing that in the post election period uncertainty remains undiminished and that’s a conservative statement. On many fronts, arguably, it has increased.”
“What we have is heightened uncertainty about trade policies in particular so we identified a number of downside risks as well as upside risks in our projection.
“Should any of those downside risks materialise and put our inflation target at risk then we would have the room to maneuver so, in that context, especially with inflation having been below target for a prolonged period, yes, a rate cut remains on the table and it would remain on the table for as long as downside risks are still present.” (Reporting by Fergal Smith, Matt Scuffham, Alastair Sharp.)