Canadian Dollar and Business Outlook: Loonie virtually unchanged

By MarketsFarm

WINNIPEG, Feb. 20 (MarketsFarm) – The Canadian dollar was firm Thursday morning, getting support from crude oil, but the United States dollar has picked up strength and weighing on values.

As of 8:44 CST, the Canadian dollar was at US$0.7552 or C$1.3241. That compares to Wednesday’s North American close of US$0.7550 or C$1.3231.

The U.S. greenback has been getting stronger as it’s a safe haven compared to struggling currencies such as the Euro and the Japanese yen, according to reports. The U.S. economy is seen as strong, while the European Union, Japan and other countries could be heading into recession, as a result of the global economic downturn spurred on by the coronavirus outbreak.

Crude oil prices were slightly higher Thursday morning, supported by news the Chinese government is trying to kick-start the country’s economy. Also, there are supply concerns in Libya due to civil war and Venezuela because of increased U.S. economic sanctions.

Brent crude oil was up 34 cents at US$59.46 per barrel and West Texas Intermediate increased by 72 cents at US$54.01 per barrel. Western Canadian Select rose 15 cents at US$36.59 per barrel.

The TSX/S&P Composite Index opened lower with a loss of 11.69 points at 17,913.67.

Gold was up US$3.97 at US$1,615.67 per ounce.

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