Canada's dollar declined against its US counterpart and most other major currencies on speculation the US economic recovery will slow in coming months and amid heightened concern the European debt crisis may spread.
The Canadian dollar, also known as the loonie, fell against 12 of its 16 most-traded peers.
It declined 0.4 per cent against the greenback, with most of the drop coming Friday after the US added fewer jobs than forecast in June and the unemployment rate climbed. Another American report, released the previous day by ADP Employer Services, had spurred optimism by showing US companies exceeded hiring forecasts last month. Canada is projected to post its fourth straight monthly trade deficit when the government issues its may report on June 12.
"Markets were thrown a head fake by the ADP numbers on Thursday," said Shane Enright, executive director at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce's CIBC World Markets unit, by phone from Toronto. Friday's report was "disappointing, and when we get weak data out of the US, Canada always gets tarred with the same brush."
Article continues below
The Canadian currency weakened 0.4 per cent to 96.27 cents per US dollar Friday in Toronto, from 95.85 cents (Dh3.5) on July 1. One Canadian dollar buys $1.0388.
The increase in US payrolls followed a 25,000 gain that was less than half the rise initially estimated, Labour Department data showed in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey called for a June gain of 105,000. The unemployment rate rose to 9.2 per cent, the highest level this year.
"No matter how you cut it, the nonfarm payrolls report was ugly," said David Tulk, chief Canada macro strategist at Toronto-Dominion Bank's TD Securities unit in Toronto, in a note to clients. "The best thing one can say about this report is that it is slowly disappearing into the rear-view mirror and with a cyclical upturn expected in the months ahead, we should see a corresponding, albeit gradual, improvement in employment."
The Fed has held its target rate for overnight lending between banks at zero to 0.25 per cent since December 2008 to support the economy.
The loonie yesterday also touched the strongest level since May after a government report showed Canada's employers added more jobs last month than economists forecast.
Canada's economy created 28,400 jobs in June after boosting payrolls by a net 22,300 positions in the previous month, Statistics Canada reported Friday. The median forecast of 27 economists in a Bloomberg News survey was for a gain of 15,000. The jobless rate held at 7.4 per cent.
"The Canadian currency is going to be in play," said Lane Newman, director of foreign exchange at ING Groep NV in New York. Canada's economy "will not be able to shrug off the weak numbers that we're seeing in the US."
The loonie weakened on July 6 after China raised benchmark interest rates for the third time this year as inflation accelerated to the fastest pace since July 2008, damping demand for riskier assets.
Yields on two-year Government of Canada bonds fell 10 basis points, or 0.1 percentage point, to 1.5 per cent, pushing the price of the two per cent note due in August 2013 up 20 cents to C$101.01.
Canada sold C$3.5 billion of five-year debt, drawing an average yield of 2.309 per cent on July 6. The government received bids of C$8.7 billion for the 2.75 per cent securities maturing in September 2016, according to a statement on the Bank of Canada's website.
Developments in Europe also weighed on the Canadian dollar.
Canada's government bonds have returned 2.7 per cent this year, according to a Bank of America Merrill Lynch index. The Canadian dollar has gained 3.7 per cent against its US counterpart in the period.
The nation will post a May trade deficit of C$800 million (Dh3 billion) according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 20 economists before the July 12 report from Statistics Canada. Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney warned last month the nation's exporters face ‘challenges' due to the ‘persistently strong' Canadian dollar and the ‘relatively poor productivity performance' of the economy.