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Building affordable homes in Peterborough

The claim was made by the Local Government Association in a report titled Understanding the Local Housing Market, which warns that many young people face renting into retirement as high rents hinder their ability to save.

It is a problem, which is why we work closely with housing associations and home builders to achieve a good mix of new housing in the city, including affordable homes to buy and rent.

In the past five years 5,328 new homes have been completed in Peterborough, with 1,074 of these affordable. Housing associations have provided an additional 150 homes for affordable ownership and rent, with a further 252 anticipated in the current financial year.

Only last week, the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority approved funding of £1.2 million to acquire a 5.1 acre site in the north of the city for around 60 homes, with 30 per cent of these affordable.

The combined authority has also agreed funding of £735,000 to convert 21 new homes from open market sale to affordable rent at Belle Vue in Stanground. It’s the second site to be developed by Medesham Homes, the joint venture partnership between the council and Cross Keys Homes.

In May, the city council agreed to provide almost £6.2 million to Medesham Homes, funded from Right to Buy receipts, to deliver 35 new affordable homes at Eye Green.

These projects are all really encouraging and are part of a long term plan to deliver homes across the city for everyone, whether it’s for the private sector, social rent, shared ownership or private rental.

The city council has also invested £10 million for the purchase of homes off the open market for use as temporary accommodation for families who are homeless and awaiting permanent re-housing. So far we’ve purchased 51 properties and anticipate being able to buy a further eight.

Our city continues to grow faster than many other parts of the country with significant levels of growth and housing experienced in the past 10 years. There doesn’t seem to be any sign of this slowing down, so it’s important that our efforts to create new housing don’t either.

Last week I attended a reception at Parliament hosted by Brandon Lewis MP, along with the Mayor of Cambridgeshire James Palmer and businessman Rob Facer of Barnack Construction to support the campaign to dual the A47 between Peterborough and Lowestoft.

This road joins the city with the east coast and is of national strategic importance, linking the Midlands with Eastern seaports, and acts as an economic artery that runs through Peterborough.

At the meeting I made sure I represented Peterborough’s interests and explained that dualling the sections on our patch would bring huge benefits, reducing journey times and congestion and supporting our vision to see more local economic growth.

In further good news, the combined authority has agreed to include two Peterborough road schemes on its list of priorities. This list is then shared with the government for a decision on funding.

The two projects are access to the new university site on The Embankment and linking the A47 better with Eastern Industry, taking the pressure off Eye and Parnwell.

The city’s Safer Off the Streets partnership is celebrating this week after winning a regional award at the Britain and Ireland Awards, organised by Premier Christian Radio.

The partnership, which scooped the ‘Best Start-Up’ category, helps on average two rough sleepers to leave the streets a month since it began in October last year and has raised a whopping £8,000 for charity.

I know many of you, myself included, have donated money either online or via the contactless card reader in St Peter’s Arcade, the money goes towards the running of the Garden House in the cathedral grounds.

The Garden House is run by the Light Project Peterborough – which also won an award – and does a fantastic job of creating a welcoming environment for rough sleepers thanks to its kind-hearted volunteers.

Another of the scheme’s partners, Care Zone, which operates out of Kingsgate Community Church, also won an award at the ceremony, which is a great achievement.

I’d like to say a massive well done to all those involved in the Safer Off the Streets partnership and to the Light Project for their efforts.

Source: Peterborough today

Nearly 40% of Toronto homes not owner-occupied, new figures reveal

More than a third of Toronto’s condominiums are owned by people who don’t live in them, according to new government figures which suggest that more cities across Canada could be facing a growing struggle with housing affordability.

Figures released this week by Statistics Canada show that 39.7% of Toronto condos are not owner-occupied, meaning they are either vacant, rented or used as a second property.

The new statistics offer further evidence that people now view housing as an investment, and not necessarily as a place to live, said Andy Yan, the director of the City Program at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.

Yan said the data shows that housing prices have “decoupled” from income, and are instead driven by access to capital – giving investors a clear advantage over average Canadians. “It’s not about supply or demand any more,” said Yan. “It’s: who are we building for?”

Worries about Canada’s overheated property market have until now focused on Vancouver, where just 12% of families can afford to own a home, and where nearly half of condos are owned by investors.

Punitive taxation on unused property and foreign buyers is having some success on the issue of foreign ownership but Vancouver still ranks just behind Hong Kong as the second-least affordable city in the world.

In Toronto, Canada’s most populous city, investor-owned properties are contributing to rising condo prices and a crunch on affordable rental housing.

Toronto has created little purpose-built rental housing in the past 40 years, leading to an overreliance on the secondary housing market for rental inventory. A housing bubble, meanwhile, led to inflated condo purchase prices and subsequent rents. Analysis done by the city of Toronto shows condo rents rose by 30% between 2006 and 2018.

John Pasalis, housing market analyst and president of Realosophy Realty, said developers are more than happy to build luxury and micro-condos for wealthy investors, rather than affordable family homes for average Torontonians.

 

“Five years down the road, do we really need 50,000 micro-condominiums that are renting for C$2,000 a month?” asked Pasalis. “I think this is the risk when your entire new housing supply is driven by what investors want, rather than what end users want.”

The latest figures are the result of a new methodology that relies on administrative data and public records, rather than census-style surveys, to answer questions about non-resident ownership in Canada. “What’s unique to Canada is how we’re using the data to answer some of those questions,” said the Statistics Canada chief, Jean-Philippe Deschamps-Laporte.

The goal of the Canadian Housing Statistics Program is to extract valuable information from existing databases – including hospital records, immigration files and tax returns – to paint the country’s most accurate portrait yet of home ownership in Canada.

Source: The Guardian Uk

Largs affordable housing boost is ‘best £20m spent’

The new affordable housing venture to replace the former Largs school buildings in Flatt Road has been hailed by a Largs Labour councillor.

Alex Gallagher of the ruling Labour minority led council believes it is a very positive step forward for housing opportunities in the local area.

Cllr. Gallagher said: “I am delighted this has happened. I have been pushing for affordable housing in Largs ever since I was elected 12 years ago

“The new land is freeing up the space and 122 houses will go a long way to answering our housing needs – our area has been one of the most pressurised housing needs in North Ayrshire.

“The housing department are to be congratulated for their visionary housing plan.

“The £20m that has been spent on the project by the council is the best £20m spent in North Ayrshire in the last 20 years.”

A two year period of construction will take place in the building of 122 new homes to replace the former Largs Academy and Kelburn Primary.

The proposed development will include 22 supported accommodation houses and a 28-unit sheltered housing complex.

In addition, the council plans to develop a sustainable district heating scheme to provide affordable heating for all of the homes on the site, and an adult outdoor gym at the site.

Source: Largsandmillportnews

Diezani, Badeh, Fayose, Dasuki, Yuguda, 65 Others Forfeit 214 Properties To Federal Government.

💥 The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has recovered 214 landed properties in Abuja, Lagos, Kaduna, Katsina, Jigawa, Kogi, Adamawa, Oyo states and in different cities across the country between 2015 and 2018.

💥 Prominent Nigerians who lost properties through court forfeiture orders include:

💥 A former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke;💧5 choice properties were recovered and they include a multi-storey building on Banana Island,
💧6 flats in Ikoyi
💧21 mixed housing in Yaba, Lagos;
💧16 terrace houses in Port Harcourt, Rivers State and
💧13 terrace duplexes in Mabushi, Abuja.

💥 Ex-National Security Adviser, Dasuki Sambo;

💥 Former Minister, Iyorchia Ayu;

💥 Late former Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh

💥 Former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Adesola Amosu (Rtd.)

💥 Former Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose,

💥 Ex-Bauchi State Governor, Isa Yuguda,

💥 Col. Bello Fadile (Rtd.)

💥 Former Katsina State Governor, Ibrahim Shema who had 20 properties under interim forfeiture.

💥 George Turner whose 17 properties in different parts of Bayelsa State were placed under interim forfeiture;

💥 Former Niger State Governor, Babangida Aliyu

💥 Garba Birni-kudu who had 14 properties under interim forfeiture.

💥 Emmanuel Ozigi and two others – 3 properties, including a seven-storey building under construction in Gudu district, Abuja

💥 Oni Ademola – 6 properties located in different parts of Ibadan, Oyo State.

💥 A hotel belonging to Ima Niboro, former spokesman to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, was returned voluntarily.👏👏

💥 Jamiu Anifowoshe
In respect of buildings in Ikorodu, Agege, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway; Cranbel Court, Citiview Estate, Arepo and forfeited to the Lagos State Government.

💥 Obasuyi Osasoghie


Real estate consisting of seven buildings located on Obafemi Awolowo Way, Ikeja, Victoria Garden City, Ikota, Port Harcourt, Lekki and Utako, Abuja and forfeited to First Bank Plc.

💥 Between January and April, 2019, the EFCC had recovered N3.2bn (final forfeiture) from

💥 Amosu who paid N2.2bn; Olugbenga Gbadebo, N190.8m; Solomon Enterprise, N101m
Paul Boroh and 16 others, who coughed up N686.7m cash.

💥 Last year, the agency recovered 💧141 vehicles;
💧44 bank accounts;
💧one barge;
💧Farmlands;
💧4 filling stations;
💧2 hotels and
💧47 parcels of land which were considered proceeds of crime.

And there’s more from those who created the poverty in our nation at a time we had plenty.

Trademore Restates Commitment to Real Estate in Abia, Debunks Land Grab Accusations

Estate development giant, Trademore International Limited and Chairman, Engr. (Dr) Emmanuel Mbaka have refuted purported claims by a former commissioner in Abia state, Eze Chikamnayo, suggesting that over 10, 000 plots of land were illicitly transferred them.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the company regards the open letter by Eze Chikamnayo as a spurious attempt to taint the company and its chairman’s image.

The statement read: ‘’We wish to clarify that as a business man with proven competence and corporate integrity, Engr. Dr Mbaka and Trademore International Limited do not and will not be associated with controversies that will taint our hard earned image over the years.

‘’We have consistently contributed to the economic advancement of our beloved country through multiple investments in many Nigerian cities including Abuja, and our chairman has led several business and corporate organisations.

‘’After great successes in many parts of Nigeria, we thought it was time to reward the love of our people by extending businesses and opportunities that will better the lives of the people of Abia through employment and entrepreneurships.

‘’Contrary to any claim or suggestion of land grabbing, all we have done is change the narrative about our people and reclaim our spot as an economically viable state. We are not a party to any shady deal whatsoever and have only conducted legitimate businesses and transactions both in Abia and everywhere else.’’

According to the statement, the land hosting the Umuahia event centre was neither grabbed nor forcefully taken away from anybody. The statement read that the land was legally acquired by the then Governor of Abia state, Chief T A Orji in accordance with the provisions of land use Act, with verifiable evidences.

‘’We must join hands to develop and move Abia state forward and stop castigating the character and integrity of Abians who have selflessly sacrificed their resources and time to make Abia a great state.

‘’Our investments in the state haven’t even yielded any benefits yet, and sometimes we take it to be a form of corporate social responsibility. Our ultimate dream is to be part of the Abia state that will attract more investments and business opportunities.

‘’We categorically distance ourselves from any brewing controversy and wish to highlight our image as a business with proven competence and integrity – the pillar upon which our success stories have been reliant on.’’

The statement berated the writer for not doing a thorough background check before embarking on what was referred to as a desperate attempt to smear and blackmail innocent people.

Trademore Refutes Land Grab Accusations in Abia

Estate development giant, Trademore International Limited and Chairman, Engr. (Dr) Emmanuel Mbaka have refuted purported claims by a former commissioner in Abia state, Eze Chikamnayo, suggesting that over 10, 000 plots of land were illicitly transferred them.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the company regards the open letter by Eze Chikamnayo as a spurious attempt to taint the company and its chairman’s image.

The statement read: ‘’We wish to clarify that as a business man with proven competence and corporate integrity, Engr. Dr Mbaka and Trademore International Limited do not and will not be associated with controversies that will taint our hard earned image over the years.

‘’We have consistently contributed to the economic advancement of our beloved country through multiple investments in many Nigerian cities including Abuja, and our chairman has led several business and corporate organisations.

‘’After great successes in many parts of Nigeria, we thought it was time to reward the love of our people by extending businesses and opportunities that will better the lives of the people of Abia through employment and entrepreneurships.

‘’Contrary to any claim or suggestion of land grabbing, all we have done is change the narrative about our people and reclaim our spot as an economically viable state. We are not a party to any shady deal whatsoever and have only conducted legitimate businesses and transactions both in Abia and everywhere else.’’

According to the statement, the land hosting the Umuahia event centre was neither grabbed nor forcefully taken away from anybody. The statement read that the land was legally acquired by the then Governor of Abia state, Chief T A Orji in accordance with the provisions of land use Act, with verifiable evidences.

‘’We must join hands to develop and move Abia state forward and stop castigating the character and integrity of Abians who have selflessly sacrificed their resources and time to make Abia a great state.

‘’Our investments in the state haven’t even yielded any benefits yet, and sometimes we take it to be a form of corporate social responsibility. Our ultimate dream is to be part of the Abia state that will attract more investments and business opportunities.

‘’We categorically distance ourselves from any brewing controversy and wish to highlight our image as a business with proven competence and integrity – the pillar upon which our success stories have been reliant on.’’

The statement berated the writer for not doing a thorough background check before embarking on what was referred to as a desperate attempt to smear and blackmail innocent people.

The real meaning of Brexit for home movers

Last month, we saw a rise in UK mortgage lending, according to Bank of England data, that highlighted a movement in housing market waters that many might have believed were beginning to stagnate.

Homeowners and home buyers in April had put aside any Brexit-related uncertainty and helped British banks approve the greatest number of mortgages since February 2017.

Net mortgage lending came in at £4.3 billion in April, slightly higher than the average of £3.8 billion seen over the previous six months.

The increase was primarily driven by mortgage approvals for house purchase, often a guide to the trend in lending going forwards.

Many commentators were quick to suggest this new impetus to buyer confidence was boosted by the delay to Brexit, which spared Britain an imminent no-deal departure from the European Union.

The rise in mortgage approvals was proof for some that housing market activity got some temporary support from the avoidance of a disruptive Brexit that was originally time-tabled for the end of March.

I’m not so sure. Brexit has over the last three years become part of national economic fabric and, with little sign or hope of anything being settled imminently, some home buyers and remortgagors appear to have taken the decision to just ‘get on with life’. We know home moving is very often driven by life events and these do not come to halt for political reasons.

These figures do not represent a new found sense of euphoria in our housing market. The data also suggested ongoing caution: April’s monthly increase of £0.9 billion in consumer credit was in line with the average since last summer, but the annual growth rate slowed to 5.9%, while new credit card lending fell for a second consecutive month.

Where the market goes from here is no more certain than before these numbers but what we can conclude is that consumers often have to get on with things. The resignation of Prime Minister

Theresa May and the ensuing contest for a new leader may heighten the uncertainty hanging over the economy but the other fundamentals are not set to change in hurry. Any new leader too will face the same maths in Parliament – whatever Brexit option they pursue.

If this continues we will see this feed into house prices but it is too early as yet to see change there. House prices are continuing to grow at an annual rate of less than 1%, according to the Nationwide Building Society.

What these figures do illustrate is that Brexit in itself is not the sole driver of home buyer behaviour. If people need to move, they will. Brexit may not make home moving easy but it is far from bringing it to a halt.

Source: Mortgage Finance Gazzette

Halfway Into 2019, How Is The Housing Market Holding Up?

Hard to believe we’re already halfway through 2019.

Headed into the year, all eyes were on the housing market as it showed signs of softening for the first time in recent memory. A sharp rise in inventory, talk of more rate hikes and shrinking home price gains in the fourth quarter of 2018 created a cloud of uncertainty.

Six months in, it’s safe to say that the sky isn’t falling. But you might think of the real estate market right now as behaving like a C student that isn’t living up to its full potential.

“The housing market is doing fine,” said Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors. “But it certainly can do better given what’s happening with job creation and the historically low mortgage rate that is currently in place.”

To make sense of this transitional period, it’s time for a midyear market pulse check. Here’s how leading industry economists are piecing together the first stretch of 2019 and what they say is in store for the future of housing.

Affordability challenges yank back price growth 

“For the first time in a long time, we’re starting to see prices correct,” said Skylar Olsen, Director of Economic Research at Zillow. “And the big thrust that’s changing that narrative is the affordability challenge.”

She explains that when home values outpace incomes so aggressively, the two “have to snap back together eventually,” which is in effect what’s happened.

In April, the S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index dropped for the 13th month in a row. To be clear, home values are still going up nationally; they’re just rising at a more moderate rate. Annual gains for April clocked in at 3.5%, down from 3.7% in March.

But in some markets the shift has been far more dramatic.

Take Seattle. For two years price growth accelerated faster there than anywhere else in the country. Then between April 2018 and April 2019, the year-over-year price change shrunk from 13.8% growth to a 0.0% flatline. Over the same time frame, San Francisco fell from 10.9% to 1.8% annual gains.

Notice a trend? The markets with the fastest growth fell the hardest. Some exceptions bucking the norm have been Las Vegas, Phoenix and Tampa, their resilience due to how hard they were hit by the 2008 housing crisis.

“I would say the price appreciation of 3% is a healthy development,” added Yun.

Mortgage rates drop, but buyers aren’t jumping the gun

After four benchmark rate hikes in 2018, the Federal Reserve signaled it planned on two more increases this year. That gave analysts every reason to believe mortgages were well on their way 5.5%.

But in March the Fed moved away from that intent and showed signs of even lowering the interest rate (whether that will happen is still TBD). As expectations changed, mortgage rates dropped from 5.09% to 4.09% between November 2018 and June 2019.

However, low interest rates aren’t like an immediate caffeine jolt for the housing market. “It doesn’t impact the down payment,” said Olsen. “And that’s the real struggle, right? Just because mortgage rates dropped doesn’t mean I can suddenly reenter the housing market.”

Demand is also tied to homebuyer sentiment, which isn’t necessarily strong right now. In June, consumer confidence dropped 9.8 points to the lowest level since September 2017 as a result of tensions surrounding the trade wars, according to the Conference Board.

“Consumers are picking up on that lack of certainty about the economic outlook,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com. “And that’s not necessarily going to inspire them to make large purchases like a house.”

Inventory challenges persist on the low-end price points 

Overall inventory has started to creep up a bit this year, though it’s deceiving to try and judge the state of affairs without seeing how the market is truly split in half.

“There is plentiful inventory on the upper end market, so the housing shortage is really on the mid-priced and low ends,” said Yun. “Because the property tax deduction has been limited, there is less desire or greater financial burden from owning than before, so the upper-end market appears to be generally softer.”

In addition experts say builders have faced a number of obstacles to ramping up new construction, including high land prices, labor barriers, material costs, and the onerous process to obtain permits.

All this puts pressure on profit margins so when builders do construct a new house, it tends to be more on the luxury end.

Finally, as people move less often and more boomers decide to age in place rather than downsize, “that’s just kind of holding up a lot of the inventory that otherwise would be lubricating the whole system,” Olsen added.

So together these dynamics have created a tale of two markets.

“If you’re selling an entry level home, you’re probably still looking at a pretty competitive market in most places,” said Hale. “But if you’re selling a more expensive home you probably have to adjust your expectations.”

Cost of living and taxes sway local market conditions 

Nationally, housing conditions could be described as a seller’s market that’s gradually moving more in favor of buyers.

Drill down to the regional or local level though, and it varies. For one, some metro areas outside of major cities have stayed warmer as they catch the spillover of priced-out buyers (see: Tacoma). Strong job creation and reasonable cost of living has kept Midwest markets like Louisville and Indianapolis thriving, along with markets that resemble the Midwest in affordability. Rochester, New York is a prime example.

But there’s always exceptions. Go to Chicagoland, and you’ll hear agents tell a very different story.

“It’s definitely a buyer’s market here,” said Kim Alden, a Realtor with Baird & Warner in the Chicago suburb of Barrington, Illinois. “Inventory is a lot higher. Buyers are negotiating harder than ever because there’s a lot of people who want to sell their house and they’re using that to get the lowest price that they can.”

Alden says that 65%-75% of her listings come from people who want to leave the state of Illinois altogether to escape new and existing state tax laws.

With supply high, she’s seeing sellers experience disappointment that they can’t get as much money for their house as they expected, with one exception: updated, smaller homes are “flying off the shelves.”

“I listed a little three-bedroom, bath and a half for $178,000, and in the first weekend we had 33 showings,” Alden recalled.

Apparently anywhere, an affordable turn-key home remains a hot commodity.

But high-end sellers will need to bust out the paint and spruce up their curb appeal to attract buyers.

What about the rest of the year? 

Real estate experts remain optimistic about housing’s prospects for the latter half of 2019. Olsen expresses that even if GDP growth weakens and wages slow, it’s likely that the market is primed for some kind of a rebound.

The biggest reason for this is that as huge waves of millennials continue to reach peak home-buying age, that will put pressure on demand not only this year but in the years to come. And it’s hard to argue with long-term demographics. If a recession does hit at some point as part of the economic cycle, housing would therefore be impacted though perhaps not devastated.

Ultimately after a long post-recession hot streak, housing was due to break fever. The hope is that the market will heat up a little slower next time and create some normalcy. For now, consider it a short-term correction, and hope that more homes will come on the market that people can actually afford.

“The perfect scenario going forward,” Yun said, “even off into the next couple of years, is if there can be a robust increase in new home construction, the housing market will be more of a bright spot for the broader economy.”

The 10 Best Places to Retire in Canada

Retiring in Canada

Canadian seniors are generally more satisfied with their lives than those in younger age groups. Older Canadians are especially appreciative of their safety, the quality of their local environment and their personal relationships, but are generally less satisfied with their health, according to a Statistics Canada report. However, life satisfaction among Canadians also varies by metro area and ranges from 7.8 out of 10 in Vancouver, Toronto and Windsor, to 8.2 in St. John’s, Trois-Rivières and Saguenay, according to a Statistics Canada analysis of Canadian Community Health Survey and General Social Survey data about average life satisfaction from 2009 to 2013. Here’s where Canadians are the most likely to be satisfied with their current lifestyle.

Chicoutimi City and the Saguenay River
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Saguenay, Quebec

Saguenay is best known for its dramatic fjord leading into the St. Lawrence River, which can be enjoyed at Saguenay Fjord National Park. Residents of Saguenay rate their life satisfaction as an average of 8.2 out of 10, Statistics Canada found. Some 77.8% of Saguenay residents report their life satisfaction as 8 or higher, more than any other metro area in Canada. Only 8.6% of the survey respondents in Saguenay say their life satisfaction is 6 or lower.

Trois-Rivières is a city in the Mauricie administrative region of Quebec, Canada, located at the confluence of the Saint-Maurice and Saint Lawrence Rivers. Trois-Rivieres has a population of 119,693 making it the 9th biggest city in Quebec
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Trois-Rivières, Quebec

Located at the junction of the Saint Maurice and Saint Lawrence rivers, the city’s name means “three rivers” in English, due to the three streams of water where the rivers meet. It was founded in 1634 and settled by French colonists. Foreign language skills will be helpful in this French-speaking city. While many of the French structures were destroyed in a fire, you can still stroll among a few of the original buildings, including the Musée des Ursulines and the Manoir Boucher de Niverville. The average life satisfaction in Trois-Rivières is 8.2 out of 10, according to Statistics Canada. Just over three quarters (76%) of residents rate their quality of life as an 8 or higher, but 9.8% of people say it is 6 or lower.

St John's Harbour in Newfoundland Canada.   Panoramic view, Warm summer day in August.
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St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

North America’s easternmost city is also one of the continent’s oldest European settlements. The city has colorful houses that line the sides of steep hills, and you can hike up Signal Hill to Cabot Tower for dramatic views of Atlantic Ocean waves crashing against the cliffs. People who live in St. John’s rate their life satisfaction as an average of 8.2 out of 10, with 74.3% of residents giving a score of 8 or higher. There are 12% of residents who rate their life satisfaction as 6 or less.

Float plane taking off Ramsey Lake Sudbury Ontario
 Greater Sudbury, Ontario

Sudbury has 330 lakes within the city limits, the most of any city in Canada. A popular science museum, Science North, includes two snowflake-shaped buildings connected by a tunnel that contains evidence of an ancient meteorite impact and passes through a geological fault. The science center sits atop glacially carved bedrock and overlooks Ramsey Lake. Greater Sudbury residents have an average life satisfaction score of 8.2 out of 10, and 72.7% of residents list a score of at least 8. Only 11.3% of residents rate their life satisfaction as 6 or lower.

Old Quebec City view Canada

Quebec City

This atmospheric city on the Saint Lawrence River is among the oldest in North America. Quebec has quaint cobblestone lanes reminiscent of a city in Europe, as well as the Canadian pleasures of poutine and maple syrup. The locals speak French, although many are bilingual. The average life satisfaction score in Québec is 8.1 out of 10, Statistics Canada found. Three quarters of residents report life satisfaction of 8 or higher, compared to just 9.3% giving a rating of 6 or lower.

Photo of Saint John, New Brunswick, from a park near the Reversing Falls Bridge. An empty wooden bench is in Foreground.
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Saint John, New Brunswick

Located on the Bay of Fundy, Saint John is a major port city. There’s a scenic drive along the Bay of Fundy between Saint John and the U.S. state of Maine, and it’s about a 3-hour drive to Bangor. Retirees with an interest in geology can work or volunteer at the Stonehammer UNESCO Global Geopark. Some 72.9% of Saint John residents rate their life satisfaction as an 8 or higher, versus 13.2% who list their satisfaction as 6 or less. The average life satisfaction rating is 8.1 out of 10.

Photo Taken In Canada, Sherbrooke
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Sherbrooke, Quebec

Sherbrooke has trails for downhill skiing, cross country skiing and snow tubing right in the center of town at Mont-Bellevue Park. Locals get to enjoy the fresh maple syrup the region produces. The city is also known for its fresco murals that decorate the downtown buildings. The average life satisfaction score is 8.1 out of 10. Three quarters of residents rate their life satisfaction as 8 or higher, compared to 11.8% who say it’s 6 or lower.

 Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
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Thunder Bay, Ontario

Hockey fans can cheer on the Lakehead Thunderwolves and the Thunder Bay North Stars, or play a game at one of the city’s many outdoor rinks. Located on the southeastern shore of Lake Superior, Thunder Bay is also an ideal retirement spot for those interested in boating, fishing and swimming during the summer months. The scenic sites surrounding the city include Mount McKay, the Sleeping Giant and Kakabeka Falls. Most Thunder Bay residents (72.5%) rate their life satisfaction as 8 or higher, with 14.1% giving a score of 6 or lower. The average life satisfaction score is 8.1 out of 10.

Moncton Downtown
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Moncton, New Brunswick

Moncton is known for its scenic beauty and unique natural features. The city is within an hour’s drive of two national parks, Fundy National Park and Kouchibouguac National Park, the Hopewell Rocks and the Joggins Fossil Cliffs. The average life satisfaction rating among residents is 8 out of 10. Some 69.9% of people in the metro area rate their life satisfaction as 8 or higher, while 14.1% say it is 6 or lower.

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

The South Saskatchewan River cuts Saskatoon in half, but several bridges unite the city. This college town is home to the University of Saskatchewan. The city is named after an edible berry, often enjoyed locally in pies and jams. The new Remai Modern museum provides a unique space where retirees can enjoy and create art, including an extensive collection of linocuts by Pablo Picasso. The majority of residents (72.1%) rate their life satisfaction as 8 or higher, but 12.7% report a satisfaction score of 6 or lower.

Sunrise in Quebec city, Canada. Chateau Frontenac.
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The 10 Best Places to Retire in Canada

  • Saguenay, Quebec
  • Trois-Rivières, Quebec
  • St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Greater Sudbury, Ontario
  • Quebec City
  • Saint John, New Brunswick
  • Sherbrooke, Quebec
  • Thunder Bay, Ontario
  • Moncton, New Brunswick
  • Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Nigeria’s investment inflows near 6-year high on carry trade

After declining for three straight quarters, capital importation into Nigeria rose to the highest in almost six years and gained the most on a quarterly basis since third quarter (Q3) 2017 as carry trade increased in first quarter (Q1) 2019.

This followed the peaceful conclusion of the 2019 general elections, an attractive yield environment in Nigeria, and the fact that most central banks in developed economies dropped interest rates, analysts say.

Carry trade is a strategy that involves borrowing at a low interest rate and investing the amount in an asset offering higher returns.

Data released Tuesday by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that the total value of capital importation into the country stood at $8.49 billion in the first three months of this year, the highest since Q3 2014, when $6.54 billion flowed into the country.

On a quarterly basis, capital importation rose by 216 percent, the highest gain since Q3 2017, when it increased by 131.27 percent. The latest figure also represents a 34.61 percent increase from $6.3 billion in the first quarter of 2018.

Nnamdi Olisaeloka, a fixed-income analyst at ZedCrest, said the figure was not surprising.

“When investors became convinced of a win for the incumbent president, they had a risk-on appetite for fixed-income securities even though they were wary of equities,” he said.

Olisaeloka pointed out that investors were lured by the high interest rate and yields environment which buoyed carry trade in Q1.

“Foreign portfolio investors were basically cherry-picking on interest rate opportunities given the expectations of continuous stability of the naira,” Olisaeloka added.

Capital importation rose to $2 billion, but rose 129 percent to $4.6 billion by March.

Favourable oil cycle and the dovish monetary policy stance in developed countries are also factors supporting carry trade across emerging markets including Nigeria, Omotola Abimbola, macroeconomic and fixed-income analyst at Chapel Hill Denham, said.

Abimbola, however, warned that while the interest environment has been juicy, levels of inflow have slowed down since March.

“Data from FMDQ are showing that from April to June, capital inflow, portfolio inflows, and even FDIs have gone back to trend level. March was a one-off jump as underinvested foreign investors increased their level of naira holdings post-elections,” he said.

For the quarter under review, the largest amount of capital importation by type was received through portfolio investment, which accounted for 84.21 percent ($7.15 billion) of total capital importation.

Other investment accounted for 12.91 percent ($1.1 billion) of total capital, while FDI accounted for 2.86 percent ($243.36m) of total capital imported in 2019.

By sector, banking received the most capital in Q1 at 33.6 percent. The sector grew its receipt by 976.57 percent quarter-on-quarter and 141.45 percent year-on-year to $2.85 billion.

Shares (equities) were the second largest destination with 28.32 percent or $2.4 billion. The figure represents a 126.25 quarterly rise although inflow was down 37 percent year-on-year.

Financing amassed a total of 25.21 percent of total capital importation in Q1 amounting to $2.139 billion. Growth was up year-on-year by 236 percent and quarterly by 232 percent.

Cumulatively, the top three sectors accounted for 87.13 percent of total capital importation in Q1.

According to the report, United Kingdom emerged as the top source of capital investment in Nigeria with $4.53 billion accounting for 53.40 percent of the total capital inflow in Q1 2019, while Lagos State emerged as the top destination of the capital investment at $4.78 billion, representing 56.25 percent of the total capital inflow during the period.

Similarly, capital inflow distribution by bank shows that Stanbic IBTC Bank plc emerged at the top of capital investment in Nigeria with $3.61 billion, representing for 42.50 percent of the total capital inflow in Q1 2019.

By CYNTHIA EGBOBOH & SEGUN ADAMS

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