Over the last week, the CAD has gained roughly 1% against the USD, a performance that reflects the greenback's overall softer tone on the one hand and solid crude oil prices on the other. The CAD was more susceptible to external forces this last week due to a paucity of domestic data, but for the most part, these factors have worked in its favor. Weaker stock market trends helped to keep CAD gains in check towards the conclusion of the week. Next week, the spotlight shifts back to domestic drivers.
The Week Ahead:
The Bank of Canada's Business Outlook Survey isn't normally a huge mover in FX markets, but it could provide insight into what policymakers are thinking about (prices, wages) at next week's rate decision. In November, retail sales are predicted to increase by 1.2 percent, while the CPI is expected to rise to 4.8 percent. Domestic data suggests that the economy ended last year on a high note, and while Omicron will cause a steep slowdown in Q1, anticipate growth to rebound up quickly in Q2. Market pricing for the end-of-January Bank of Canada meeting is a teetering 14 basis points higher than last week, but still not indicating much confidence that policymakers will go ahead with a 25-basis point raise. The only thing stopping the BoC from increasing this month is Omicron, but once the latest round of limitations has been lifted, expect policy to tighten fast and aggressively this year. As a result, most analysts continue to expect the CAD to outperform in the next quarters.
USD/CAD Weekly Trading Range:
The fair market value estimate for the CAD settled around 1.2460 at the conclusion of last week, indicating a little undervaluation. With an anticipated ceiling of 1.2835, spot could see a bit more upside in the next week, as strong domestic data should support BoC predictions imminent rate hikes. This week’s trading range 1.2350 – 1.2650.
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