Bank of Canada hikes benchmark rate

The Bank of Canada is once again raising its benchmark interest rate as it sees the economy's powerful performance pointing to broader, more self-sustaining growth.
   
The central bank hiked its rate Wednesday by one-quarter point to 1.0 per cent, its second 25-basis-point increase since July.
   
The move, which will likely be a surprise for some, came less than a week after the latest Statistics Canada numbers showed the economy expanded by an impressive 4.5 per cent in the second quarter.
   
That followed unexpectedly healthy growth in the first three months of 2017 and easily exceeded the Bank of Canada's projections.
   
In a statement today, the bank said solid employment and wage growth led to strong consumer spending, while the key areas of business investment and exports also improved.
   
Looking ahead, the bank insisted future rate decisions will not be ``predetermined'' and will be guided by upcoming economic data releases and financial market developments.