Canada's Flaherty says rising confidence important

Fri May 25, 2012 1:26pm EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said on Friday that rising consumer confidence in North America is a more important economic signal than the recent depreciation of the Canadian dollar.

"I think consumer confidence is what's important," Flaherty told a reporter from Business News Network television when asked which of the two trends is a more accurate indicator.

"If the range of movement of the dollar is relatively minor, I'm not terribly concerned about it because we see some fluctuation like that from time to time and year to year. But consumer confidence is difficult to regain once it's lost," he said.

He also said that on a scale of one to 10, the degree of instability in Europe right now is a "five".

(Reporting By Claire Sibonney; Writing by Louise Egan; Editing by Peter Galloway)