Canadian dollar is getting hammered today on dismal trade and fire in the oilpatch

, Financial News

The Canadian dollar has fallen more than a cent today after Canada’s trade deficit ballooned to a record and a raging wildfires threatened oil production.

TORONTO — The Canadian dollar weakened to a two-week low against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday after disappointing domestic trade data and as a wildfire threatened production in the country’s oil sands region.

The trade deficit in March unexpectedly widened to a record C$3.41 billion ($2.66 billion) as exports sank for a second month on widespread weakness, Statistics Canada data indicated.

“The Canadian dollar isn’t helped by awful trade figures,” said Adam Cole, head of global foreign-exchange strategy at Royal Bank of Canada in London, who expects the loonie to weaken to $1.33 by the end of 2016. “It’s starting to call into question the rebalancing story that many have bought into recently.” 

The economy remains on track to grow more than 3 per cent in the first quarter, but the data provides a “weak handoff” going into the second quarter, said Paul Ferley, the assistant chief economist at Royal Bank of Canada.


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