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Big banks ratcheting up mortgage rates again

Some of Canada's biggest banks have been inching up their mortgage rates in recent weeks, with Royal Bank being the latest to announce an increase Friday. The hike is the second in a month and will take effect next week.

The bank said it is boosting some of its special discounted fixed-rate mortgages, effective next Tuesday.

The four-year closed-rate mortgage is moving up 10 basis points to 3.39 per cent, the seven-year is increasing by 20 basis points to 3.99 per cent, the 10-year is moving up by 30 basis points to 4.29. And perhaps most significantly, the five-year closed rate mortgage will increase by 20 basis points to 3.69 per cent.

The vast majority of first-time homeowners go with fixed-rate mortgages, and five years is the most popular term.

The hikes are small in percentage terms, but they add up over time. Under Royal Bank's old five-year rate, a $300,000 25-year mortgage would cost $1,496.23 a month. That same mortgage will cost $32 more per payment to finance starting next week, which will add up to more than $9,500 over the life of the mortgage.

The bank has already moved once this month to raise a few of its fixed-rates mortgages in reaction to suddenly higher borrowing costs on the bond market, which is where the bank finances most of its fixed-rate mortgages.

Scotiabank and TD Bank have also recently increased their special discounted rates.

--CBC News