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A very busy week expects loonie traders, including a rate decision and employment data. Here’s an outlook for the Canadian events, and an updated technical analysis for USD/CAD.

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

canadian dollar forecast september 6 10

Canadian GDP for the second quarter, completed with the past week’s release for June, was somewhat disappointing, after two great quarters. The overall situation is still good. This week’s 7 important Canadian releases will shed a lot of light on the current situation. Let’s start:

  1. Building Permits: Published on Wednesday at 12:30 GMT. This is a volatile, yet important gauge for the Canadian economy. Last month’s 6.5% rise in permits boosted the Canadian dollar and corrected the 8.2% fall that was seen in the previous month. The see-saw is predicted to continue with a drop of 5.8%.
  2. Rate decision: Published on Wednesday at 13:00 GMT. There is no clear consensus about this rate decision. After two rate hikes, Mark Carney’s BOC is in a dilemma. On one hand, the economy is doing quite well, and there’s a fear of rising inflation. On the other hand, Canada’s main trader partner, the US, is suffering from a slowdown, that can undermine growth in Canada. So, both an unchanged Overnight Rate of 0.75% and a hike to 1% are equally possible. This means higher than normal volatility around the release. Aslo note the accompanying statement which will indicate future moves. A hike with a statement that there will be a pause from now on can weaken the loonie.
  3. Ivey PMI: Published on Wednesday at 14:00 GMT. The Richard Ivey School of Business disappointed in its last release. The score fell to 54 points, showing that purchasing managers see less expansion. A similar number is expected this time. Only a rise above 50 points, as seen three months ago, will boost the loonie.  A rise to 55.8 is expected.
  4. Housing Starts: Published on Thursday at 12:15 GMT. Complementing on the figure from the previous day, this housing figure wasn’t too good – it fell for the 4th straight month to 189K, the lowest level since February. Another curb is due now, to 185K.
  5. Trade Balance: Published on Thursday at 12:30 GMT. Canada enjoyed a surplus in its trade balance up to April, but the number then turned negative, and even deteriorated to a deficit of 1.1 billion in last month’s release. This deficit will probably squeeze to 0.8 billion. Note that the American trade balance is released at the same time, making the timing very volatile for USD/CAD.
  6. NHPI: Published on Thursday at 12:30 GMT. The last housing figure is an official release of the change in prices of new homes. After 3 months of a 0.3% rise, this stable indicator rose by only 0.1% last month. A stronger rise will probably be seen now. Due to the timing of the publication, together with the trade balance, the impact will probably be quite modest.
  7. Employment data: Published on Friday at 11:00 GMT. The best is kept for last. After three superb months of big gains in jobs, including a surge of 93K jobs one time,  last month saw a correction with a loss of 9300 jobs and a rise of the unemployment rate back to the round number of 8%. A gain of 17.6K in jobs is expected now, but the unemployment rate is likely to remain unchanged at 8%.

USD/CAD Technical Analysis

The Canadian dollar had a bad start to the week – USD/CAD failed to break below 1.05 and jumped towards the stubborn 1.0680 line (mentioned also in last week’s outlook). It then made another failed attempt to go under 1.05, but on Friday, this line finally broke and USD/CAD even extended its fall below the 1.04 line.

USD/CAD now trades between support line of 1.0280 and 1.04, which was a long-term bottom border of wide range. It’s now a minor resistance line.

Looking up, the next resistance line is at 1.05, which worked as a strong support line during most of the past week. Higher, the 1.0680 line was successfully tested for a second week in a row, making it a very strong resistance line.

Above, the 1.0750 line was the top border of a long term range, and also a swing high in May. Another swing high in May, the 1.0850 line, works as the next line of resistance, after working as such back in 2009 as well.

Lower, the 2009 low of 1.02 serves as the next line of support. Below, 1.01 capped the pair after it reached parity in April, and also was a low point a few weeks ago.

The ultimate line of support is parity – which got closer in the past week. Beyond parity, 0.98 and 0.97 provide support. They’re far now.

I remain bearish on USD/CAD.

The improvement in US jobs is good for Canada as well, as the US is Canada’s main trade partner. This week is very important for the loonie. A rate hike and positive job figures can send USD/CAD for another attempt on parity.

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