CMHC suspends dividend payment to Ottawa

by Steve Randall on 27 Mar 2020

There will be no dividend payments to the Canadian government from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation during the coronavirus crisis.

CMHC usually makes regular and special dividend payments to Ottawa, ranging from a hundreds of thousands of dollars thorough to $4 billion, the largest amount paid, in 2017.

But with the corporation supporting Canadian homeowners, multi-unit borrowers and housing providers experiencing financial difficulty resulting from the current crisis, along with measures to strengthen the financial system, its board has decided to suspend payments temporarily.

"Temporarily suspending the dividend is a prudent measure that allows us to conserve capital to support Canadians and the economic recovery through the crisis should the need arise. As a key stabilizing component of the Canadian financial system, we will be substantially increasing our appetite for risk as we and other institutions absorb the impacts of these events," CMHC said in a statement.

CMHC added that, as of December 31, 2019, its capital position remains strong with approximately $3 billion in excess capital for our mortgage insurance and mortgage funding activities.

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