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TORONTO (Reuters) - The pace of purchasing activity in Canada slowed in February for the second straight month, according to Ivey Purchasing Managers Index data.
The seasonally adjusted index fell to 51.1 in February from 58.9 in January. Analysts polled by Reuters had expected an adjusted reading of 57.5.
A reading above 50 on an index indicates that the pace of activity increased from the previous month.
"At the margin, it may have added to the weakness to the Canadian dollar today," said Doug Porter, chief economist, BMO Capital Markets.
The Canadian dollar weakened to a session low against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday after the Bank of Canada softened its stance on the need for interest rate hikes.
The seasonally unadjusted index fell to 51.6 from 54.8.
Reporting by John Tilak and Solarina Ho; Editing by James Dalgleish