The Canadian Dollar pretty much kept pace with the buoyant US Dollar last week. USD/CAD opened on Monday at 1.2760 and at the start of trading in North America that day moved on to a 1.28 ‘big figure’. Quite remarkably, that is where it stayed for the entire week with a low of 1.2820 on Tuesday and a high on Friday morning of 1.2895 before closing in New York at 1.2830. This amazingly steady performance meant that Friday’s plunge in GBP/USD was matched by a similar drop in GBP/CAD which fell from 1.7900 to a low around 1.7675.
As talks on renegotiating the NAFTA agreement head towards their denoument, Ms Rona Ambrose, a member of Canada’s NAFTA Advisory Council, spoke on TV this weekend. She said, “A great deal of progress has been made, specifically around rules of origin for automotives and I think that bodes very, very well for the negotiations… The rules of origin around automotives and making more parts and cars in North America, has always been the sweet spot to get to Donald Trump. It’s a difficult part to get through, and if we can get through this, which it looks like we have, I think it’s a very good sign... If he can say, 'We've reached some kind of an agreement or framework where we can build more cars, build more American parts in North America, in the United States,' that’s a great sign to his voters about more jobs.”
Although the US labour market report will be released on the first Friday of the month of May, Canada’s employment numbers won’t be out until Friday 11th. Instead, the economic highlight locally will be the monthly GDP figures for February which are published on Tuesday. This will come an hour or so before Aprils manufacturing PMI survey and ahead of a speech by Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz at 2.30pm local time. He’ll be speaking to the Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce on the topic “Canada’s Economy and Household Debt: How Big Is the Problem?”. The Canadian Dollar opens in Europe this morning with USD/CAD in the mid-1.28’s and GBP/CAD at 1.7695.