Canadian dollar edges lower as weak crude oil prices weigh

Thu Dec 10, 2015 9:29am EST
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TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar edged slightly lower against the U.S. dollar on Thursday after U.S. crude oil prices hit a fresh trend low below $37 a barrel, contrasting with gains for fellow commodity currencies, the Australian and New Zealand dollars.

Oil gave up earlier gains as persistent oversupply concerns offset a surprise fall in U.S. crude inventories after 10 weekly rises.

U.S. crude CLc1 prices were down 0.70 percent to $36.90 a barrel, while Brent crude LCOc1 lost 0.22 percent to $40.02.

A rise in the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits had little impact, as the underlying trend remained consistent with tightening conditions.

Canadian industrial production capacity climbed 0.6 percentage points to 82.0 percent in the third quarter of 2015, close to expectations, following two consecutive quarterly declines.

New home prices in Canada rose by a higher-than-expected 0.3 percent in October from September on higher prices in the Toronto area.

At 9:14 a.m. EST (1414 GMT), the Canadian dollar CAD=D4 was trading at C$1.3571 to the greenback, or 73.69 U.S. cents, slightly weaker than the Bank of Canada's official close of C$1.3564, or 73.72 U.S. cents.

The currency's strongest level of the session was C$1.3533, while its weakest level was C$1.3580.

Against the Australian dollar, the Canadian dollar weakened to C$0.9898, having hit its weakest level in 10 months at C$0.9938 after Australian employment surged for the second straight month.   Continued...

A Canadian Loonie, otherwise known as a one dollar coin, is displayed on top of an American one dollar bill in this posed photograph in Toronto, October 10, 2008.   REUTERS/Mark Blinch