TORONTO – The Canadian dollar fell slightly against the U.S. dollar Thursday morning as commodity prices pulled back.
The loonie was down 0.04 of a cent at 101.16 cents US before stock markets opened in North America.
Analyst John Curran of Canadian Forex noted that traditional risk currencies, like the Canadian dollar, are under pressure as traders engage in some year-end profit taking.
“Given the slow pace of movement on our beloved currency pair over the past few months don’t hold your breath for a quick pop higher, however thin holiday markets may provide a surprise. For those looking to clear up any pre-holiday requirements I suggest you do so before week’s end,” Curran said in a note.
February oil futures lost 22 cents to US$89.76 a barrel. February Gold prices fell $8.10 to US$1,659.60 per ounce, while copper prices slipped six cents to US$3.54 per pound.
There was mixed economic data out of the U.S., with better-than-expected third-quarter economic growth of 3.1 per cent in the July-September quarter.
However, the number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits rose last week by 17,000, reversing four weeks of declines. The Labor Department reports that a seasonally adjusted 361,000 people sought unemployment aid the week ended Dec. 15, from a revised 344,000 the week before.
But the less-volatile four-week moving average fell 13,750 to 367,750, the lowest since late October, suggesting that the job market continues to grow modestly. Applications had surged after Superstorm Sandy, then fallen back.