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The Canadian economic data overview

Statistics Canada will publish domestic consumer inflation figures for May and April monthly retail sales data at 1230 GMT this Friday. The headline CPI is expected to show a steady rise of 0.3% m/m, with the yearly rate anticipated rising to 2.5% in May. Conversely, the broader BoC measure of core inflation is expected to have ticked lower to 1.4% y/y, albeit is seen edging higher on a monthly basis.  

Separately, the monthly retail sales are expected to remain flat on a monthly basis in April as compared to a 0.6% growth recorded in the previous month. Meanwhile, the measure of sales that excludes automobiles – core retail sales – is projected to expand by 0.5% in April, following a 0.2% contraction in March.

In view of Analysts at TDS: “We see modest downside risks to retail sales on a pullback in motor vehicle sales, which should leave sales down 0.2% m/m while ex-auto sales post a 0.3% gain (market: 0.0%, 0.5%).”

How could it affect USD/CAD?

The pair has already started correcting from one-year tops and was seen retreating farther below the 1.3300 handle. Today’s macro data would influence investors’ expectations for an interest rate hike next month from the Bank of Canada and eventually have a lasting effect on the Canadian Dollar.  

A stronger than expected reading(s) could exert some additional long unwinding pressure and continue dragging the pair further towards the 1.3200 round figure mark. Alternatively, softer data should assist the pair to regain traction and move back above the 1.3300 handle, towards retesting one-year highs resistance near the 1.3335 region.  

About the Canadian CPI and retail sales

Consumer Price Index Core is released by the Bank of Canada. “Core” CPI excludes fruits, vegetables, gasoline, fuel oil, natural gas, mortgage interest, intercity transportation, and tobacco products. These volatile core 8 are considered as the key indicator of inflation in Canada. Generally speaking, a high reading anticipates a hawkish attitude by the BoC, and that is said to be positive (or bullish) for the CAD.

The Retail Sales released by the Statistics Canada is a monthly data that shows all goods sold by retailers based on a sampling of retail stores of different types and sizes. The retail sales index is often taken as an indicator of consumer confidence. It shows the performance of the retail sector in the short term. Generally speaking, the positive economic growth anticipates bullish movements for the CAD.