TECHNICAL UPDATE: USD/CAD – Poised for a test above 1.02?
Updated Feb 8, 2012 6:00:00 PM
USD/CAD has been a major head-scratcher of late as the Loonie has not strengthened alongside the moves higher in crude oil (WTI)1 or the S&P5001 over the past few weeks – These are relationships which typically have positive correlations. So what was potentially causing this dichotomy? We believe this is the result of the Bank of Canada’s change of guidance in their interest rate statement on January 23rd, when they noted that higher interest rates were “less imminent”, pointing to weakness in the economy (lowering their 2013 GDP outlook to 2.0% from 2.3%), slowing inflation, stabilizing debt levels and persistent currency strength. This was further reinforced on the Jan. 25th when the BoC released their December Consumer Price Index (CPI) figures, which showed a decline to -0.6% MoM and +0.8% YoY versus consensus expectations of -0.2% MoM & +1.2% YoY. Together, this combination saw market participants push back their expectations of a rate hike from mid-late 2013 to 2014 (at the earliest). Consequently, this saw USD/CAD take out its respective 200-day sma near 0.9985, parity as well as the previous highs from November around 1.0055, before toping out around 1.0100.
Since then, the pair has spent much of the past two weeks pulling back, but then yesterday found support into the daily 144 & 169 EMA’s as well as the top of the daily Ichimoku Cloud around 0.9940. Today’s rather disappointing Canadian January Jobs report, -21.9K vs. expected +5K and +39.8K prior, provided USD/CAD with the ammunition to break back above parity and when we take this, as well as previous technical indications into consideration – RSI’s bullish divergence & then finding support into the key 40 level, followed by a break above the noted 65 level, it suggests a new uptrend could be in the works. Should USD/CAD break above the previous highs around 1.0100 over the ensuing sessions, it could see a test of the key 1.0215/45 level next.
1.0215/45 sees the convergence of:
- Channel resistance
- Two different Fibonacci Extensions
- 200-week sma
- Top of the weekly Ichimoku Cloud
Furthermore, just above this convergence zone USD/CAD sees the 61.8% retracement, of the 2011-12 decline, around 1.0265/70 and with the economic calendar in Canada rather light next week – only Dec. Manufacturing Sales and Jan. Existing Home Sales, it could set the stage for a technical driven move higher over the next few days. That said, should USD/CAD break back below yesterday’s low around 0.9930, it would negate this bullish bias as it could revisit the previous 2013 lows around 0.9815 thereafter.*
1 Reference is for informational purposes only and is not offered to US clients
*Forex trading involves a significant risk of loss and is not suitable for all investors