The Canadian dollar continued to climb Thursday as speculation grew that the Bank of Canada is ready to raise its key interest rate sooner rather than later.
The loonie touched 77 cents US for the first time since February during the session before pulling back at the close to an average price of 76.83 cents US, trading 0.26 of a U.S. cent higher.
The increase was also helped by an uptick in oil prices, with the August crude contract adding 19 cents at US$44.93 per barrel.
Comments from Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz on Wednesday raised expectations that a rate increase could come as early as next month’s central bank meeting on July 12.
The bank had lowered its rate twice in 2015 to the very low level of 0.5 per cent to help offset the effects of the lower oil prices.
Chief market strategist Colin Cieszynski of CMC Markets Canada says Poloz’s remarks point to the prospective trend that central banks around the world may start moving on rates.