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USD/CAD posted gains for a second successive week, and the pair punched above the 1.35 line for the first time in 2019. This week’s key event is Canadian GDP. Here is an outlook for the highlights of this week and an updated technical analysis for USD/CAD.

There were no surprises from the Bank of Canada, which maintained the benchmark rate at 1.75%. The rate statement was dovish, reinforcing the view that the BoC will put a freeze on rates, which could last until 2020. The bank noted that the oil price decline had reduced investments and exports in the energy sector, and investment and exports in other sectors had been dampened by trade tensions and the slowdown in the global economy.

In the U.S, last week’s numbers were positive. Durable goods orders climbed 2.7%, crushing the estimate of 0.7%. Core durable goods orders gained 0.4%, marking a 9-month high. This was followed by a strong initial GDP release of 3.2% in Q1, well above expectations. This was much stronger than Final GDP for Q4, which came in at 2.2%.

USD/CAD daily chart with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:

  1. GDP: Tuesday, 12:30. Canadian GDP is released on a monthly basis. The economy produced a gain of 0.3% in February, after two straight declines. Will we see a stronger gain in March?
  2. Raw Materials Price Index: Tuesday, 12:30. This important inflation indicator has been showing strong gains, and climbed 4.6% in March, well above the estimate of 1.2%. This marked the strongest monthly gain since December 2017.
  3. Manufacturing PMI: Wednesday, 13:30. The PMI has slowed for four successive months, as the manufacturing sector has been damaged by the global trading war, which has reduced demand for Canadian exports. The April reading of 50.5 pointed to stagnation.

USD/CAD Technical Analysis

Technical lines from top to bottom:

We start at 1.3757, which has held since May 2017.

1.3660 was the high point for USD/CAD in December.

1.3547 capped USD/CAD in June 2017. 1.3445 (mentioned  last week) was breached in resistance for the first time since March.

1.3385 was breached early in the week as the pair posted strong gains. Close by is 1.3350.

Lower, 1.3265 was the high point in mid-November. 1.3225 has held in support since early March.

1.3175 was a swing low in late November.

1.3125 was a low point earlier that month.

1.3048 has provided support since early November.

I remain bullish on USD/CAD

The BoC remains in dovish mode and policymakers have acknowledged that the economic slowdown was deeper than the bank expected. The U.S economy in better shape than its Canadian counterpart, so the Canadian currency is likely to face further headwinds, although higher oil prices could limit the damage to the loonie.

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