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  • USD/CAD rose momentarily as high as the 1.2700 level but has since slipped back to the mid-1.2600s.
  • Consolidative conditions are unsurprising given key risks events in the US and Canada later in the week.

USD/CAD has slipped back from earlier session highs at the 1.2700 level, with sellers keen to keep the pair below the big figure ahead of the pair’s 50-day moving average, which currently resides at the 1.2709 mark. If the bulls do regain control and take USD/CAD north of 1.2700, significant resistance in the 1.2740-1.2750 area is worth noting (the early March and late February highs).

But right now, USD/CAD is content to consolidate around the 1.2650 mark, very close to its 21-day moving average at 1.2659. On the day, the pair is up a modest 0.1% or about 10 pips.

Driving the day

Consolidative trade on Monday is no surprise given a 1) lack of fresh fundamental catalysts (aside from the news that the Senate passed US President Joe Biden’s $1.9T stimulus package over the weekend, as expected) and 2) caution ahead of key events later in the week on both sides of the US/Canada border. Crude oil markets have been on the back foot over the last few hours, with traders seemingly booking some profit with WTI and Brent prices at cycle highs, though this does not seem to have hurt the loonie at all.    

The Week Ahead

Starting with key events in the US; with all the recent focus on rising bond yields and expectations for higher inflation, Wednesday’s Consumer Price Inflation data release for February and 10-year government bond auction will both be in focus. If the former is stronger than expected and the latter shows poorer than expected demand for US government debt, this would provide fresh impetus to the recent move higher in bond yields and would likely be USD bullish. Meanwhile, US Weekly Jobless Claims on Thursday and Producer Price Inflation and Michigan Consumer Sentiment on Friday will both also be in the spotlight.

Turning to key events in Canada; Wednesday sees  the Bank of Canada announced its latest monetary policy decision. Consensus expectations are for the bank’s next move to be an unwind of its QE programme, given recent positives in the form of surging oil prices (good for Canada’s energy sector) and better than expected containment of the pandemic. But ING argues the bank will be patient; “in the middle of a fierce bond sell-off, Governor Tiff Macklem will likely have no interest in endorsing any tapering expectations”¦ We expect the BoC message to be broadly in line with the recent Fed’s rhetoric: stressing that monetary stimulus is here to stay”.

BoC Deputy Governor Lawrence Schembri will then be speaking on Thursday and giving colour on the rate decision. Stats Canada will then release the February Labour Market report on Friday; ING thinks the “jobs figures for February may follow the US ones higher, and keep the domestic narrative supportive for CAD”.