The US dollar remains steady against the loonie this morning as the market awaits further US economic data releases; the greenback posted its largest weekly rise this year after US GDP showed greater than expected growth.
Released this morning, US month-on-month personal spending grew by 1.0% versus an expected 0.8%, while month-on-month growth of US personal income came in at 0.4%, as expected.
Investors look ahead to a busy week ahead of economic data and events: Canadian GDP data, a US FOMC statement, US Non-Farm Payrolls and a potential announcement for Trump’s pick for the next Federal Reserve Chair.
Political events may also dominate the headlines this week; protests in Spain continue to cause uncertainty over the future of an independent Catalan state, while the Trump-Russia probe entered a new phase today with this morning’s arrest of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.
Oil prices are higher this morning as prices for Brent Crude continues to move past the psychologically important $60/barrel level, the highest level for Brent since July 2015; WTI prices also moved to its highest level in nearly 8 months.
Oil is tracking higher on increased speculation that OPEC and other major oil exporters will seek to extend their oil production cut deal until the end of 2018; the deal, led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, was already renewed once and is set to expire at the end of March 2018.
Increased oil production out of the US, however, is tapering this recent rally; US production is up by almost 13 percent since mid-2016 with oil shipments out of the US recently hitting a record of 2 million barrels per day.