The US dollar is flat against the Canadian dollar on Friday morning, keeping up the rangebound price action seen all week that has left the exchange rate almost unchanged. Elsewhere US and Canadian stock markets fell on Thursday amid growing fears about the spread of the coronavirus outside of China.
USD/CAD was lower by 3 pips (-0.05%) to 1.3255 with a daily range of 1.3242 to 1.3269 as of 9.30am GMT. The currency pair moved inside a tight 15-pip range around the 1.325 level, pretty much where it started the week.
The Canadian dollar
CAD edged down again from a 3-week peak against the US dollar on Friday to leave the exchange rate barely changed on the week, as of the time of writing. A blockade of some railway tracks in Ontario and Alberta Canada left unresolved for two-weeks seemed to act as a drag on the Loonie. Concern are growing that the stand-off between rail companies and protestors will mean a lingering threat to trade and transport links. The blockade is in sympathy with the indigenous Wet’suwet’en First Nation people who are protesting a gas pipeline being built across their land.
Canada created 25,900 jobs in January according to payroll services provider ADP, that was less than the 71,800 expected and 46,200 previously in a sign of a slowdown in the pace of hiring. New house pricing was also unchanged on the month when a small rise of 0.2% was expected. On Friday Canada reports retail sales for January on Friday where a monthly gain of 0.1% is expected, down from the 0.9% last month, although the picture if rosier if you exclude auto sales which is forecast to rise 0.4%, up from 0.2% in December.
The trigger for the appreciation of the exchange rate back to the top of its 5-day trading range was more a function of dollar strength than weakness in the Canadian dollar. A rise in the price of oil, something that often contributes to strength in the Loonie was unable to offset demand for the greenback.