USD/CAD – Edges Up as Canadian Trade Balance Disappoints

The Canadian dollar began the new week with strong gains against the US currency, but has given up much of those gains in the Tuesday session. USD/CAD punched across the 1.03 level in the European session, and is trading in the low-1.03 range. The loonie lost ground after a weak Canadian Trade Balance, in contrast to the US Trade Balance release, which beat the estimate. 

The markets had a chance to analyze Trade Balance numbers from both Canada and the US on Tuesday. In Canada, the key indicator dropped back into negative territory, posting a deficit of $0.6 billion, higher than the estimate of -$0.4 billion. Last month, Trade Balance came in at $0.0 billion, but the indicator retracted and posted yet another deficit. Meanwhile, the news was better south of the border, as US Trade Balance beat the estimate, although the deficit widened  from $-38.8 billion to $-40.3 billion. The estimate stood at $41.1 billion.

In the US, we continue to see weak numbers from key releases. Last week, unemployment, GDP and housing numbers missed their estimates, and this week started in much the same fashion, as ISM Manufacturing PMI dropped below the 50-point level. The index posted a reading of 49.0 points, missing the estimate of 50.6 points. This marked the first time in 2013 that the PMI has pointed to contraction in the manufacturing sector.

Quantitative easing has become a hot topic, as the markets ponder whether the US Federal Reserve will scale back the current round of QE. Fed policymakers, including Fed Chair Bernanke, have hinted that QE could be wound up in the next few months. However, with the US continuing to alternate between good and bad economic releases, the Fed is unlikely to act before it is convinced that the US economy is improving. Much of the volatility we are seeing from the major currency pairs can be attributed to market uncertainty about what action the Fed will take. Further hints from the Fed about scaling back QE will likely affect the currency markets.


USD/CAD for Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Forex Rate Graph 21/1/13
USD/CAD June 4 at 13:50 GMT

USD/CAD 1.0325 H: 1.0336 L: 1.0278


USD/CAD Technical

S3 S2 S1 R1 R2 R3
1.0157 1.0229 1.0282 1.0337 1.0442 1.0502


USD/CAD has pushed higher, crossing into 1.03 territory on Tuesday. The pair is receiving support at 1.0282. The next support level is at 1.0229. On the upside, the pair faces resistance at 1.0337. This line could be fall if the US dollar continues to push higher. This is followed by resistance at 1.0442.

  • Current range: 1.0282 to 1.0337


Further levels in both directions:

  • Below: 1.0282, 1.0229, 1.0157, 1.01 and 1.0041
  • Above: 1.0337,  1.0442, 1.0502, 1.0658 and 1.0758


OANDA’s Open Positions Ratio

USD/CAD ratio has shifted directions, and is pointing to movement towards long positions. This is reflected in the current movement of the pair, as the US dollar has posted gains against the Canadian currency. We continue to see a majority made up of short positions, indicating a bias towards the pair moving in a downward direction.

USD/CAD has moved higher, crossing above the 1.03 line. The US dollar took advantage of a weak Canadian Trade Balance, in contrast to the US Trade Balance, which beat the forecast. We could see more volatility on Wednesday, as both Canada and the US release key events.


USD/CAD Fundamentals

  • 00:25 Bank Of Canada Deputy Governor Timothy Lane Speaks
  • 00:25 Canadian Trade Balance. Estimate -0.4B. Actual -0.6B
  • 12:30 US Trade Balance. Exp. -41.1B. Actual -40.3B
  • 14:00 IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism. Estimate 50.2 points. Actual 49.0 points.
  • 17:30 US FOMC Member Esther George Speaks


*Key releases are highlighted in bold

*All release times are GMT


This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher

Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Kenny Fisher joined OANDA in 2012 as a Currency Analyst. Kenny writes a daily column about current economic and political developments affecting the major currency pairs, with a focus on fundamental analysis. Kenny began his career in forex at Bendix Foreign Exchange in Toronto, where he worked as a Corporate Account Manager for over seven years.
Kenny Fisher

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