USD/CAD - Canadian Dollar Trading Sideways

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The Canadian dollar sank on the back of broad U.S. dollar demand yesterday. FX markets were extremely choppy due to the E.U. reaction to the U.K.’s latest Brexit salvo, and because of the European Central Bank (ECB) monetary policy meeting.

The Australian and New Zealand dollars were the best performing major G-10 currency pairs overnight rising around 0.54% compared to the U.S. dollar. The Canadian dollar managed to squeeze higher but only rose 0.17%. The British pound dipped, and the Japanese yen was close to unchanged.

GBP/USD collapsed on Thursday, falling from $1.3030 to $1.2780, a loss of 2.0%. It was a self-inflicted wound caused by the U.K. government's unilateral decision to amend the previously agreed E.U. withdrawal agreement. The European Union dismissed the U.K.’s actions with E.U. lawyers claiming Britain is in breach of the deal. It gave Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government three weeks to amend the Internal Market Bill. Analysts quickly raised the odds for a "no-deal" Brexit and traders sold the currency.

GBP/USD recouped some of its losses overnight and in early Toronto trading, with prices climbing from a low of $1.2764 to $1.2835. The gains were attributed to profit-taking ahead of the weekend.

EUR/USD traded erratically yesterday following the European Central Bank (ECB) monetary policy meeting. The ECB was not as dovish as expected which gave EUR/USD an early lift, taking prices from $1.1836 to $1.1915. ECB President Christine Lagarde said that the economic data showed a "strong rebound," supporting gains, but sentiment shifted when she said the "balance of risks was to the downside." The ECB also tweaked 2020 growth forecasts from an ugly -8.7% to a still ugly -8.0% y/y.

EUR/USD dropped to $1.1812 after Ms Lagarde noted that although policymakers didn’t target the exchange rate, they do monitor how the exchange rate impacts inflation. Prices climbed steadily overnight and touched $1.1873 at the Toronto open.

Asia equity markets closed on a mixed note, and European equity indexes are all higher, in contrast with yesterday’s losses on Wall Street. Gold and oil prices are close to unchanged ahead of this morning's U.S. inflation report.

August Consumer Price Index figures in the U.S. were expected to drop to 0.3% m/m compared to July’s 0.6% result. The impact of the data will be limited ahead of next week’s Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

Rahim Madhavji is the President of KnightsbridgeFX.com, a Canadian currency exchange that provides better rates than the banks to Canadians
Learn how KnightsbridgeFX can help you save up to 2% when buying or selling US dollars compared to your Canadian bank’s rates – click here to compare bank rates