Canadian Dollar and Business Outlook: Loonie holding firm

By MarketsFarm

WINNIPEG, Jan. 21 (MarketsFarm) – The Canadian dollar was virtually unchanged Tuesday morning ahead of tomorrow’s interest rate announcement from the Bank of Canada.

As of 8:38 CST, the Canadian dollar was at US$0.7662 or C$1.3054. That compares to Monday’s North American close of US$0.7661 or C$1.3053.

It’s widely expected on Wednesday that Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz will continue to freeze the bank’s key interest rate at 1.75 per cent. Signs that the Canadian economy is gaining strength are likely to guide Poloz to continue the rate freeze.

Crude oil prices were mixed Tuesday morning as increased United States inventories weighed on values. However Middle East tensions in Iran, Iraq and civil war in Libya have been causes for concern.

Brent crude oil lost 62 cents at US$64.58 per barrel and West Texas Intermediate was down 40 cents at US$58.14 per barrel. Meanwhile, Western Canadian Select was up 53 cents at US$34.75 per barrel.

The TSX/S&P Composite Index opened down 55.33 at 17,524.33 points. A Statistics Canada report stating that manufacturing sales dropped 0.6 per cent to C$57 billion in November put pressure on the market.

Gold was down US$11.48 at US$1,559.29 per ounce.

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