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The CEO of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce says he expects overall mortgage growth in the country to be flat or in the low-single digits for the “foreseeable future.”

Victor Dodig says the potential for mortgage growth to turn negative will hinge on whether the Canadian housing market takes a negative turn, driven by other macroeconomic factors.

Dodig’s comments at the RBC Capital Markets Banking CEO conference on Tuesday come after the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) said national home sales are projected to fall to a near-decade low this year.

CREA said last month that rising interest rates and strict mortgage stress-test rules continue to weigh on homebuyer sentiment.

Toronto-Dominion Bank CEO Bharat Masrani told the conference on Tuesday that he expects mortgage growth in the mid-single digits for 2019.

Bank of Nova Scotia’s CEO Brian Porter says that mortgage activity in the first couple months has been “quite strong,” but it remains to be seen what will happen during the crucial spring real estate season.