- USD/CAD bears lurking for the open on OPEC news.
- OPEC producers announce voluntary oil output cuts.
USD/CAD ended Friday near flat but the Canadian Dollar edged lower against its US counterpart although it held near its strongest level in more than five weeks. The pair fell from a high of 1.3564 to a low of 1.3507 while the Canadian Dollar was supported by domestic data that pointed to stronger economic growth in the first quarter than the Bank of Canada has projected.
The Canadian economy expanded 0.5% in January, eclipsing the 0.3% increase economists had expected, while preliminary data for February showed Gross Domestic Product advancing by a further 0.3%. Meanwhile, slower US consumer spending growth boosted hopes the Federal Reserve would be less aggressive in hiking interest rates. The latest Personal Consumption Expenditure price index (PCE) also showed inflation is starting to slow in the US. The core price index lifted just 0.3% in February from 0.6% in January. Core inflation is now at 4.6% YoY and the headline level at 5.0% YoY. Personal income increased by 0.3% (from 0.6% in January) while personal spending dropped to 0.2% (from 2.0%).
Meanwhile, the price of oil, one of Canada’s major exports, rose to the highest in three weeks on Friday touching $75.68 as a high in the spot market. The weekend news, OPEC producers announce voluntary oil output cuts, is anticipated to lift the price of oil which would be expected to be supportive of CAD.