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The Canadian dollar  continues to trade at high levels, but managed to post slight gains against the US dollar last week, as USD/CAD closed at 1.1060.  The upcoming week is a busy one, highlighted by Building Permits and Employment Change. Here is an outlook on the major events and an updated technical analysis for USD/CAD.

Canadian GDP looked awful in January, declining by 0.5%. The US is also running into some turbulence, as GDP missed the estimate and Unemployment Claims were higher than expected.

[do action=”autoupdate” tag=”USDCADUpdate”/]

USD/CAD daily chart with support and resistance lines on it. Click to enlarge:     USDCAD Forecast Mar. 3-7

  1. Raw Materials Price Index: Monday, 13:30. RMPI is an important manufacturing inflation indicator. The indicator posted a strong gain of 1.9% in January after three straight declines. The markets are expecting another strong increase for February, with the  estimate standing at 2.3%.
  2. BOC Overnight Rate: Wednesday, 15:00. The Bank of Canada benchmark rate has not budged since September 2010, standing at 1.0%. No change is expected in the upcoming release, but analysts will be closely monitoring the Bank’s Rate Statement.
  3. BOC Senior Deputy Governor Tiff Macklem: Thursday, 1:15. Macklem will speak at an event in Toronto. Coming right after the BOC rate announcement, the markets will   be all ears when Macklem delivers his remarks.
  4. Building Permits: Thursday, 13:30. This key indicator tends to fluctuate, making accurate forecasts a tricky task. After two sharp declines, the markets are anticipating a strong turnaround in February, with an estimate of 1.9%.
  5. Ivey PMI: Thursday, 15:00. Ivey PMI rebounded strongly last month after a reading below the 50-point level in December, which indicates contraction. The index came in at 56.8, well above the estimate of 51.3. The  markets are not expecting  much movement  in the February release.
  6. BOC Deputy Governor John Murray: Thursday, 16:30. Murray will address a financial conference in Victoria. A speech which is more hawkish than expected is bullish for the Canadian dollar.
  7. Employment Change: Friday, 13:30. Employment Change is one of the most important economic indicators and can have a major impact on the direction of USD/CAD. The indicator surprised with a very sharp release in January, posting a gain of 29.4 thousand, well above the  estimate of 19.7 thousand. The estimate for the February estimate stands at 16.9 thousand. Will the indicator repeat and beat the prediction? The unemployment rate stands at an even 7.0% and no change is expected for February.
  8. Trade Balance: Friday, 13:30. The trade deficit widened last month to -$1.7 billion, well above the estimate of +$0.7 billion. Little change is expected in the upcoming release, with an estimate of $-1.6 billion.
  9. Labor Productivity: Friday, 13:30. This indicator is released on a quarterly basis. In Q3, the indicator posted a weak gain of 0.2%, shy of the estimate of 0.3%. The markets are expecting a  respectable gain of 0.6% for Q4.

*All times are GMT.


USD/CAD Technical Analysis

USD/CAD opened the week at 1.1113 and  touched a high of 1.1160.  The pair then dropped to a low of 1.1040  as key support at 1.10 (discussed last week) remained intact.  USD/CAD  closed the week at 1.1060.

Live chart of USD/CAD: [do action=”tradingviews” pair=”USDCAD” interval=”60″/]


Technical lines, from top to bottom:

We  begin  with resistance at 1.1617. This line  marked a high point for the pair in July 2009, at which time the Canadian dollar posted  a rally in which USD/CAD dipped below the 0.94 line.

1.1535 provided key support back in early 2007. It has been a resistance line since July 2009.

1.1369 fell in October 2008 as the US dollar posted  sharp gains, climbing as high as the 1.21 level.

1.1124 is the next line of resistance. It was breached during the week as the loonie weakened but remains in place to start the week.

The key psychological barrier of 1.10  held firm in a support role.  It is  not a strong line  and could see activity  early in  the week.

1.0945 is next.  This line  has  held firm since mid-February.

1.0853 is the next support line. 1.0723 was a cap in mid-2010, before the US dollar tumbled and dropped all the way into 0.93 territory. It remains a strong support line.

1.0660 saw a lot of activity in the second half of December and continues to provide strong support.

The final support line for now is 1.0523.  It  was a peak back in November 2011 and has provided support since late November 2013.


I am bullish on USD/CAD

The Canadian  economy has not impressed and this was reiterated with a decline in GDP in January. Weak US releases have not helped the loonie, as the US is Canada’s trading partner, so trouble in the US usually finds its way North quite rapidly. If Canadian Employment Claims and Building Permits miss their estimates, we  could see the Canadian dollar slide southwards.

Further reading: