Canadian Financial Close: Loonie dips against strengthening U.S. greenback

By MarketsFarm

WINNIPEG, Feb. 20 (MarketsFarm) – The Canadian dollar was slightly lower at market close on Thursday, as the United States dollar continued to gain strength.

The loonie finished the day at US$0.7545 or US$1=C$1.3254, which compares with Wednesday’s close of US$0.7558 or C$1.3231.

The U.S. greenback has been on the rise lately as other currencies, such as the Euro and Japanese yen, have declined due to their weaker economies. That’s because of the economic havoc the COVID-19 strain of the coronavirus has instilled in the global marketplace.

Benchmark crude oil prices were slightly higher on Thursday as the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported the country’s crude inventories increased by only 414,000 barrels. That was about one-sixth of what market analysts had predicted, according to Reuters. However, renewed fears regarding COVID-19 weighed on values as the number of new cases in Japan and South Korea were up.

Brent crude oil rose 19 cents at US$59.31 per barrel, and West Texas Intermediate (WTI) gained 49 cents at US$53.78 per barrel. Western Canadian Select (WCS) inched up 12 cents to close at US$36.56 per barrel.

The TSX/S&P Composite Index made a small gain of 18.70 to finish the day at 17,944.06 points.

Gold was up US$8.50 on Thursday to close at US$1,620.21 per ounce.

Canada’s agricultural sector fared as follows:

Buhler Industries unchanged at $ 2.95
Linamar Corp. up $ 0.42 at $ 42.38
Maple Leaf Foods dn $ 0.15 at $ 25.47
Nutrien Ltd. up $ 1.81 at $ 57.40
Ritchie Bros Auctioneers Inc. up $ 0.57 at $ 57.89
Rocky Mountain Dealerships Inc. up $ 0.05 at $ 6.40
(All figures are in Canadian dollars.)

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