Canadian prices, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), rose 8.1 per cent on a year-over-year basis in June, up from 7.7 per cent last month. This was the fastest growth rate since January 1983. Excluding gasoline, the CPI rose 6.5 per cent year over year in June. Month-over-month, on a seasonally-adjusted basis, prices were up 0.6 per cent, down from 1.1 per cent last month. In BC, consumer prices rose 7.9 per cent year-over-year, down from 8.1 per cent last month. Average hourly wages grew 5.2 per cent year-over-year in June, indicating a decline in purchasing power. 

While June's CPI brought some encouraging early signs that inflation is peaking, we will need to see a sustained decline in the rate of inflation over the next several months to see any relief on mortgage rates. For now, markets are still expecting an aggressive Bank of Canada, singularly focused on bringing inflation back to its 2 per cent target.


For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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You think high school algebra was hard? Try wrapping your mind around these amazing numbers, courtesy of the Cracked website:

• To write the largest known prime number in a straight line, you would need a sheet of paper 23 miles long.

• Americans use 100,000,000,000 plastic shopping bags a year, enough to stretch end to end around the equator twice every day.

• A blue whale can eat up to 40 million small krill a day—about 7,900 pounds, which is more than the weight of a Hummer.

• A Rubik’s Cube has 45,252,003,274,489,856,000 possible configurations.

• Beetles represent 30% of all known animal species, with more than 300,000 species currently identified.

• People send 205 billion emails every day. If you were to print out each one on a separate sheet of office paper—which would consume 25 million trees—the stack would stretch halfway around the equator.

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Safety is nothing to take for granted, but too many organizations don’t pay enough attention to it because of myths and misunderstandings. The OSHA Education Center website highlights some all-too-common misconceptions about workplace safety: 

Safety training is too expensive. Yes, it may require some upfront costs, but the cost of an injury to an employee can be even worse, not to mention the potential downtime if your organization has to shut down to investigate an accident and fix things.

Accidents will happen no matter what. Accidents may indeed happen unexpectedly, but that’s no reason not to take precautions. A proactive approach to safety will make employees feel empowered to head off potential accidents before they happen.

Employees already know how to protect themselves. Don’t take anything for granted when it comes to workplace safety. Training is essential even for experienced employees. Everyone needs a refresher now and then, and changes in tools and technology call for new training so employees are fully equipped to take care of themselves effectively.

Offices don’t have to worry about safety. You may not work in a manufacturing plant or warehouse, but the traditional office environment has lots of room for accidents. Trips/falls, falling objects, electrical cords, and health issues associated with sitting at a desk all day are all problems to confront in an office setting. Healthy employees mean fewer sick days and insurance claims.

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Are you as productive as you could be at work? It depends on how you start your day. To get off on the right foot, follow this advice from the website:

Empty your mind. Get rid of extraneous thoughts that might distract you up front. If necessary, write down any ideas or worries, and then set them aside so you can focus on your first task.

Don’t check your email right away. Spend 30 minutes or so on something productive before looking at your emails. You’ll avoid getting sucked into nonessential tasks.

Avoid meetings. Don’t call a meeting first thing in the morning. We spend enough unproductive time in meetings as it is. Block out a meeting-free zone on your schedule, and attend only the most essential early morning meetings.

Stand up. Instead of settling into your chair first thing, take a short walk or use a standing desk for the first 10 minutes of your day. This can help you feel more energetic and empowered.

Use Natural Light. Open your blinds to let in the sunshine. It’ll help you wake up and feel more alert. If that’s not an option at your workspace, invest in a lamp that simulates sunlight.

Set and share deadlines. Let someone else know when you expect to finish an important task. Keeping it to yourself makes letting it slide too easy. Having someone in on it will help you feel accountable, even though it’s just a co-worker with no authority over you.

Start one at a time. Don’t try to accomplish several morning tasks at once, no matter how easy they are. Focus on just one, finish it, and move onto the next. Allocate blocks of time for specific tasks, with shorter spans in between for miscellaneous jobs. 

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Looking up into the bright blue sky, a father and son gazed at the beautiful kite they had created together. The boy became very happy seeing his kite high in the air. The kite soared higher and higher, and the boy said, “Dad, it seems that the string is holding the kite back from flying higher. If we cut the string, the kite will be free and go even higher."

"Dad, can we cut the string?”

The father cut the string and the kite started to go a little higher. The boy beamed with happiness. But then, slowly, the kite started to drift downward and soon fell back to the ground. The boy was surprised and said, “I thought that cutting the string would cause the kite to fly higher, why did it fall down?”

The father explained, "The string was not holding the kite from going higher. It was helping the kite to maintain its position in the sky. The string pulling on the kite keeps its nose pointing upward. When we cut the string and the wind slowed, we couldn’t pull the string to keep the kite pointed in the right direction. So, it could only return to the ground.”

Summertime is a good time to remember that the things we think are holding us back are really giving us direction to continue toward our goals and what matters most.

Enjoy the rest of your summer and keep your eyes pointed up.

Gino Pezzani
DIEN Realty
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Meat isn’t automatically on the menu these days, according to the Lansing State Journal. A Michigan State University Food Literacy and Engagement poll found that approximately 41% of Americans say they’re likely to buy artificially produced forms of meat that look and taste the same. This is up from 33% in 2018.

The survey looked at people’s understanding of the relationship between food and climate change. One finding: Fewer than 50% of people surveyed realized that eating plant-based foods can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions 

Meatless meat was originally made from beans, soy, cauliflower, and the like. Newer versions feature plant-like “meat” designed to resemble traditional meat.

But Americans are becoming more open to eating meat-like products made from other sources, like insects. One 2019 poll found that 25% of Americans are willing to try that.

Meat grown from cells in labs are a potential future option, though none are commercially available in the U.S. right now. Still, 35% of Americans say they’re likely to buy some when it comes out.

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Canadian housing starts fell by 8.3k (3 per cent) to 273.8k units in June at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate (SAAR). Comparing year-over-year, starts were down from June of 2021 (1.6 per cent). Single-detached housing starts declined 3.9 per cent to 72.1k, while multi-family and others fell 2.6 per cent to 201.8k (SAAR). 

In British Columbia, starts rose 34.6 per cent in June, rising to 56.4k units SAAR in all areas of the province. In areas in the province with 10,000 or more residents, single-detached starts declined 10.3 per cent m/m to 6.9k units while multi-family starts rose 48.4 per cent to 46k units. Starts in the province were 15.3 per cent below the levels from June 2021. Starts were up by 7.9k units in Vancouver, 6.4k in Kelowna, and 1.0k in Abbotsford from last month, while declining by 1.3k in Victoria. The 6-month moving average trend rose 0.3 per cent to 43.1k in BC in June. 


For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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Some people think daydreaming is a waste of time, but it can be a powerful tool for sharpening your creativity. The Entrepreneur magazine website spells out why:

Motivation. Daydreaming about something you’d like to do can increase your motivation to go out and do it. It helps you visualize your goals and structure your thoughts.

Visualization. Use your daydreams to go into detail about your goals so you can identify possibilities and options.

Problem Solving. You can’t always attack a problem with logic and brute force. Spend some time letting your mind roam. Daydreaming relaxes you and reduces stress, so it might help you spot a solution you’d otherwise miss.

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For the complete news release, including detailed statistics, click here.

Vancouver, BC – July, 2022. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 7,136 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in June 2022, a decrease of 35.7 per cent from June 2021. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $951,105, a 4.6 per cent increase from $909,657 recorded in June 2021. Total sales dollar volume was $6.8 billion, a 32.8 per cent decline from the same time last year. 

“While a still growing economy and robust population growth point to strong demand, it is increasingly difficult to satisfy that demand at current interest rates,” said BCREA Chief Economist. “As a result, sales activity across the province, but especially in more expensive markets, continues to slow.”

For the second straight month, year-over-year provincial active listings rose, with listing in June 16.4 per cent higher than this time last year. While active listings remain below what is typical for a balanced market, some markets and housing types have tipped into balanced or even buyers’ market territory as sharply higher mortgage rates push potential buyers to the sidelines.

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 17 per cent to $53.5 billion compared with the same period in 2021. Residential unit sales were down 27.6 per cent to 51,202 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 14 per cent to $1.05 million.

For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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The Bank of Canada surprised markets with a larger than expected full point increase in its overnight rate, bringing its key policy rate to 2.5 per cent.  In the statement accompanying the decision, the Bank noted that inflation is higher and more persistent than the Bank expected and will likely trend near 8 per cent through the summer before easing to 3 per cent by the end of 2023. Core inflation, which removes the more volatile components of the CPI, is rising at between 4 and 5 per cent, indicating broad price pressures throughout the economy. While the economy is experience strong growth this year, the impact of Bank of Canada rate tightening is likely to slow the economic growth from 3.5 per cent this year to just 1.75 per cent in 2023.

The overnight rate is now within the Bank's estimate of "neutral", or the level of its policy rate at which inflation should run at 2 per cent and the economy is operating at full-capacity. However, it is clear from the Bank's statement that it expects it will have to tighten rates above neutral to bring inflation, and expectations of inflation, back to its 2 per cent target level.  As of this morning, financial markets expect that the Bank of Canada will raise its overnight rate to above 3 per cent, and those expectations are currently embedded in 5-year fixed mortgage rates which have exceeded 5 per cent for the first time in over a decade. While there are encouraging, early signs that inflation is peaking, we will need to see a sustained decline in the rate of inflation over the next several months to see any relief on mortgage rates. 


For more information, please contact: Gino Pezzani.

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