Traffic Advisory Cape Breton Antigonish Canso Causeway Update

first_imgMotorists are advised to use extreme caution while driving insome parts of Cape Breton Island and Antigonish County today,Feb. 28, as blowing snow is reducing visibility in some areas of Cape Breton and Antigonish County, especially nearlakeshores and coastlines. Some roads remain closed in Inverness County, including Route395 from the West Lake Ainslie Road to Scotsville. However,crews from Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and PublicWorks and the private sector are working non-stop to open and widen all roads. The Cabot Trail at Grand Etang is closed until 5 p.m. today,Feb. 28, so crews can remove snow. And all roads in InvernessCounty are expected to be open by Sunday evening, Feb. 29. The Canso Causeway is open to two lanes of traffic, howeverconditions may change depending upon weather. Motorists areasked to call 902-625-2540. The department also provides updated road condition reportsthree times a day, seven days a week in winter by calling toll-ree 1- 800-307-SNOW (7669). The service is also availableonline at . -30-last_img read more


Existing US home fell in December as supplies at 17year low

WASHINGTON – Americans retreated from purchasing homes in December, as the number of properties listed for sale sank to its lowest level since 1999.The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that sales of existing homes fell 2.8 per cent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.49 million. For all of 2016, sales posted an annual gain of 3.8 per cent to 5.45 million.But the housing market has become trapped by a supply shortage that has pushed prices higher and may limit the potential for additional sales growth. Homebuyers simply have fewer choices, as new construction has yet to meet demand and existing homeowners have been reluctant to list their properties for sale.“Home buying is likely to face additional headwinds going forward, which include low inventory levels, rebounding prices and higher mortgage rates,” said Admir Kolaj, an analyst at TD Bank, who added that these factors are unlikely to “completely derail” the housing market.Just 1.65 million homes were listed for sale in December. This marks a 6.3 per cent drop from a year ago to the smallest total since 1999.The tight supplies pushed the median sales price to $232,200 last month, up 4 per cent from a year ago.Homebuyers were able to manage the rising sales prices in part because of low mortgage rates in 2016, but those rates have climbed upward and settled above 4 per cent since Donald Trump’s presidential victory. The financial markets expect that Trump will try to stimulate economic growth through deficit spending, which caused the rates to rise on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note and mortgages.The Realtors estimate that rising mortgage rates in recent months increased the typical monthly payment by $75, or $900 a year.It’s possible that rising mortgage rates are causing more people to buy homes earlier than they otherwise would in hopes of locking in lower monthly payments.“When that activity dies down, we’re not sure where the next wave of buyers is coming from,” said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said last week that the rate on 30-year fixed-rate loans averaged 4.09 per cent from 4.12 per cent. That was dramatically higher than a 30-year rate that averaged 3.65 per cent for all of 2016, the lowest level recorded from records going back to 1971.In December, sales fell in the Northeast, Midwest and West, while staying unchanged in the South, according to the Realtors. by Josh Boak, The Associated Press Posted Jan 24, 2017 8:06 am MDT Last Updated Jan 24, 2017 at 9:20 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Existing US home fell in December as supplies at 17-year low read more