Invesco Canada blog

Insights, commentary and investing expertise

Currency outlook: Global growth, policy convergence support longer-term U.S. dollar weakness


October 13, 2017
Subject | Institutional | Macro views

The Canadian dollar’s rally since May could be described as relentless. We view the Bank of Canada (BOC) as currently the most hawkish developed market central bank, having hiked its overnight rate by 0.25 percentage points in two back-to-back meetings, bringing its policy rate to 1.00%.1

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Currency outlook: CAD rally continues

The Canadian dollar has rallied significantly this year following the Bank of Canada’s (BoC) switch to a hawkish tilt. The combination of reasonably strong growth and the expressed intent of the BoC to remove both emergency rate cuts from 2015 left the market covering shorts in the Canadian dollar. The extreme rally has left the currency susceptible to a short-term retracement, in our view.

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Currency outlook: Strong global growth drives central bank policy convergence

The Canadian dollar has been in a slow decline over the last year. While the Bank of Canada increased the benchmark interest rate, as expected, by 0.25% (to 0.75%) at its July meeting, oil prices appear to have peaked for the year due to increased U.S. oil production, presenting a headwind for the currency.1 We are neutral on the Canadian dollar, and concerns about overleveraged Canadian consumers leave us looking for opportunities to short the currency.

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Currency outlook: Strong global growth mixed for U.S. dollar

The Canadian dollar has been in a slow decline over the last year, but has shown strength recently. As growth rebounded in the first quarter, the Bank of Canada (BoC) appears to be becoming concerned that excess capacity may be declining faster than they would like. While oil prices appear to have peaked for the year due to U.S. oil production, there has been little effect on the currency. We remain underweight the Canadian dollar due to the overleveraged Canadian consumer, but we are monitoring the recent hawkish BoC rhetoric closely.

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Currency outlook: Continued CAD volatility

The Canadian dollar weakened significantly in April, breaking out of its one-year range. A combination of factors contributed to the weakness. Higher U.S. oil production and lower oil prices have put pressure on the Canadian currency. The announcement of U.S. tariffs on Canadian softwood exports has also been a factor. Third, the recent liquidity problems of a Canadian subprime mortgage lender have played a role. Despite the recent strength in the latter half of May, we believe weakness in the Canadian dollar is likely to continue.

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Currency outlook: Global growth, eurozone elections continue

Canadian dollar strength has faded recently despite stronger economic data. Weakness in oil prices has been responsible for some of the reversal. The Bank of Canada has, at least temporarily, dropped its dovish tilt, but appears content to leave the overnight rate target at 0.50% for the foreseeable future.1 The Canadian dollar continues to remain overvalued, in our view.

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Currency management: A simple roadmap

Global diversification has become standard practice among investors around the world. As the trend toward global investing grows, managing currency risk in global portfolios is likely to take on increasing importance. Sovereign wealth funds, central banks and other investors are likely to consider the benefits and challenges of currency hedging as their investment strategies become more globally focused. However, evaluating the impact of foreign exchange risk on portfolios and how to address that risk is a debated issue. Should global investors adopt strategies to specifically address currency risk or should they not?

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Currency outlook: CDN overvalued, USD mixed

The Canadian dollar was reasonably strong until the first week of March, when the U.S. Federal Reserve (the “Fed”) began telegraphing the prospects of a rate hike at its March meeting. The Bank of Canada has appeared to continue to favour a somewhat weaker currency in spite of some strong economic data, including very strong full-time employment reports. Our opinion remains that the Canadian dollar is overvalued and we favour being short the currency.

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Currency outlook: CAD overvalued and USD mixed

The Canadian dollar has appreciated against the U.S. dollar since the U.S. presidential election in November. Some of the strength has been due to the higher price of oil on the back of promised cuts by OPEC producers in late 2016. In addition, a recent string of positive employment reports in Canada has supported the currency. Bank of Canada Governor Poloz attempted to limit further appreciation by mentioning that a rate cut was still possible at its January meeting with limited success. We believe the Canadian dollar remains overvalued.

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Currency outlook: USD volatility and euro weakness

The Canadian dollar has bounced around since the U.S. presidential election as economic growth has shown positive signs but inflation continues to disappoint the Bank of Canada (BoC). It sold off initially after the Fed raised rates in December, but rallied back strongly after year end. The BoC stated at its January meeting that rate cuts are still a possibility, but it will likely wait until more clarity is available on U.S. fiscal and trade policy before taking action. The Canadian dollar remains overvalued, in our view, but will likely trade within a range in the near term.

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