– Loonie supported by blockbuster jobs data.
– Slow start to week ahead of US inflation data Tuesday.
– US dollar consolidating Friday’s moves and opens on mixed note.
USDCAD snapshot open 1.3360-64, overnight range 1.3347-1.3378, close 1.3347, WTI $78.97, Gold $1858.96
The Canadian dollar soared Friday following a robust domestic employment report. Canada gained a surprising 150,000 new jobs in January while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.0%.
The news was not music to the Bank of Canada’s ears. The BoC hiked rates by 25 bps to 4.5% on January 25, and then suggested it was done raising rates. The statement said, “If economic developments evolve broadly in line with the MPR outlook, Governing Council expects to hold the policy rate at its current level while it assesses the impact of the cumulative interest rate increases.”
The first ever BoC Summary of Deliberations (minutes) which were released February 8 detailed the reasons for the rate hike. Chief among them was that the Labour market data continued to indicate tightness. Friday’s employment data argues that Labour market tightness was still a major problem, which raises the risk for another BoC rate hike in March.
That sentiment drove USDCAD from 1.3453 pre-data to 1.3347 by the close of business on Friday. USDCAD consolidated the losses overnight.
Oil prices are also undermining USDCAD. West Texas Intermediate consolidated last weeks gains in a $78.48-$79.80/barrel range, supported by Russia’s plans to cut production, and Opec forecasts for increased demand.
EURUSD traded in a 1.0657-90 range. Bank of Italy Governor and ECB policymaker Ignazio Visco warned about engineering a recession from an “unnecessary and excessive rise in real interest rates.” EURUSD bulls are also leery due to the latest Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine The European Commission released a fresh economic forecast predicting the EU will avoid a recession as GDP grows 0.9% in 2023.
GBPUSD dipsy-doodled in a 1.23032-1.2065 range. Traders are content to stay sidelined ahead of UK employment and US inflation reports tomorrow.
USDJPY rallied from the opening bell in Asia, rising from 131.29 to 132.76. The combination of rising 10-year Treasury yields and uncertainty around the naming of the new BoJ governor has lifted prices.
AUDUSD rallied in a 0.6291-0.6341 range. Traders were sidelined ahead of RBA Governor Lowe’s speech Tuesday and Australia CPI and employment reports on Thursday.