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The Royal Canadian Mint’s 2012 lucky loonie coin. (JEFF McINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The Royal Canadian Mint’s 2012 lucky loonie coin. (JEFF McINTOSH/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Loonie closes lower amid weak GDP data Add to ...

The Canadian dollar closed lower Monday after the latest gross domestic product figures showed that economic growth is moving at a sluggish pace.

The loonie dropped 0.08 of a cent to end at 93.72 cents (U.S.).

Statistics Canada said the economy grew by 0.1 per cent in April – the same pace as in March – on lower oil and gas production. The figures failed to meet economists’ expectations of a gain of 0.2 per cent, according to Thomson Reuters.

Traders have been watching for signs that the economy has moved on from the long, severe winter, which dragged consumer spending in the first quarter.

Commodity prices were mixed with August crude losing 37 cents to $105.37 a barrel. Crude prices have declined recently in the wake of the weaker-than-expected U.S. consumer data and expectations that the insurgency in Iraq won’t spread to that country’s oil-producing south.

September copper was up 3.55 cents at $3.55 a pound, while August gold bullion gained $2 to $1,322 an ounce.

The loonie has had a positive month, up about 1 1/2 cents to a six-month high as gold and oil prices rose amid geopolitical concerns in Iraq and tensions continued in Ukraine and Russia.

The loonie had also found support from stronger-than-expected inflation data, which raised expectations that the Bank of Canada might raise interest rates sooner than thought.

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