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The Canadian dollar finally broke the losing streak against the greenback, but USD/CAD is still not too close to parity. NHPI and Manufacturing Sales are the main market movers this week. Here’s an  outlook  for the Canadian events and an updated technical analysis for the Canadian dollar.

Last week, the BOC acknowledged the European worries, however continued to see  the  glass half full, by announcing that Canadian economy is growing in line with predictions and that the labor market is continuing to improve. Will Canadian economy live up to expectations despite global uncertainty?

Updates: There were a host of economic releases late last week, most of which were below the market forecast. PMI looked very sharp, coming in at 60.5 points, easily beating the estimate of 53.5. Housing Starts was a disappointment, falling sharply to 211 thousand units. The forecast stood at 226K. Employment Change was also below the market forecast. The indicator came in at 7.7 thousand newly employed people, well below the prediction of 10.0K. Trade Balance posted a weak reading of -0.2 billion, the first monthly deficit since December 2011.The Unemployment Rate remained at 7.3%, matching the market forecast. The quarterly Labor Productivity release came in at 0.1%, falling below the  estimate of 0.3%.  USD/CAD was trading at 1.0244. There are no releases this week until Thursday. The loonie was down, as the pair was trading at 1.0273. After breaking the 1.03 line, USD/CAD has retraced. The pair was trading at 1.0258. With a host of releases due out of the US today, including Retail Sales and PPI, we could see further movement from the pair. USD/CAD continues to drift, as the pair was trading at 1.0261. NHPI and Capacity Utilization Rate will be released later on Thursday.

USD/CAD  daily chart with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:USD/CAD Chart June 11 15 2012

  1. OPEC Meetings: Thursday. OPEC meetings are held in Vienna attended by delegates from 13 oil-rich nations deciding how much oil they will produce. In the next meeting on June 14 OPEC will elect a Secretary-General.Iran declared they will announce candidate for this position.
  2. NHPI: Thursday, 12:30. House price index climbed 0.3% in March, following a similar increase in February. This rise topped the 0.2% increase predicted by analysts. On a yearly base, NHPI was up 2.6%, following a 2.3% increase the previous month. House price index  is expected to rise  0.5% this time.
  3. Capacity Utilization Rate: Thursday, 12:30.Canada’s capacity utilization rate continued rising in the fourth quarter with a 0.5% climb reaching 80.5% output. This increase was less than the 81.6% anticipated and below that of 83.4% posted in the first quarter of 2007. 12 of the 21 industries covered for the survey advanced, including the transportation equipment, machinery, chemical products, plastic products and metal products industries. Another increase to 81.2% is predicted now.
  4. Manufacturing Sales: Friday, 12:30. Canadian manufacturing sales jumped 1.9% in March, rebounding from the 0.2% drop in February. Transportation and petroleum and coal sales were the major contributors for this rise. The increase was way above the 0.4% rise predicted by analysts complying with GDP growth in the first quarter. A 2.2% gain is forecast this time.

* All times are GMT.

USD/CAD  Technical  Analysis

Dollar/CAD started the week by holding on to high levels, above the 1.0360 line (didn’t appear last week). It then managed to break below 1.03 and even got close to the 1.02 line before moving back up and closing at 1.0257.

Technical lines, from top to bottom:

1.10 is a round number and also served as resistance back in 2009. s1.0850 was last seen in 2010, but has been very persistent as a cap for the loonie.

1.0750 was the peak of ranges several times in the past few years, and is a very important line. 1.0660 was last seen in September 2011, but this line was also a long running swing high several times beforehand.

1.0523 was a peak back in November and is minor resistance. 1.0460 capped the pair in June 2012 and also had a minor role in the past. It is now high resistance.

1.0360 was a pivotal line in June 2012 and is now significant resistance. The round number of 1.03 was resistance at the beginning of the year and now returns to this role. 1.0245 served as a separator for the move up when the pair rallied in May 2010 but is weaker now.

The round figure of 1.02 was a cushion when the pair dropped in November, and also the 2009 trough. It is weaker now but remains pivotal after being broken. 1.0150 was a swing low in September and worked as resistance several times afterwards.

1.0050 was tough resistance in April 2012 and also in May. Very close by, 1.0030 capped the pair twice in March 2012 but is weaker now after working only temporarily in May.

The very round number of USD/CAD parity is a clear line of course, and the battle is renewed after the recent climb.

Under parity, we meet another pivotal line at 0.9950. It served as a top border to range trading in March 2012 and later as a line in the middle of the range.

0.99, the round number is now present on the graph after capping the pair in May 2012.  0.9840 provided support for the pair during September and was reduced to a minor line now.

I am neutral on USD/CAD.

The relative hawkishness of the BOC in the face of a global storm provides some support for the loonie. Also strong employment figures help. On the other hand, the high uncertainty and the lower chances of QE3 weigh on the pair. The balance will likely continue until the Greek elections.

Further reading: