Canadian Dollar Rises Against US Dollar Ahead of Labor Market Data

The Canadian dollar had small gains against its US counterpart on Thursday, one day before the release of employment data and unemployment numbers in Canada. The US dollar was weaker today after the number of jobless claims missed estimates.

A report released by the US Department of Labor said that the week ended February 4 saw 234,000 applications for unemployment benefits. This was 12,000 claims less than the previous week and missed estimates of 249,000 claims. The moving average for four weeks was 244,250, which is 3,750 claims lower than the moving average of the previous week, and marks the lowest level since November 1973.

Meanwhile in Canada, a new reading for the new housing price index released by Statistics Canada revealed an increase by 0.1% in December from the previous month, which disappointed expectations. The increase reflects price gains in Ontario and Alberta, as higher construction costs, improving market conditions, and smaller supply of development land were among the reasons behind the gain.

The Canadian dollar managed to rise today, even though a report by the US Energy Information Administration said that crude stockpiles in the United States surged in the last week. Stockpiles of oil, which is one of Canada’s major exports, increased by 13.8 million barrels in the week ended February 3, which is the strongest surplus since October 2016.

USD/CAD traded at 1.3137 as of 19:45 GMT on Thursday, from 1.3097 at 14:15 GMT, the pair’s strongest level since February 7. USD/CAD started the day at 1.3147.

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