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A Canadian dollar coin, commonly known as the "Loonie", is pictured in this illustration picture taken in Toronto in this January 23, 2015, file photo. The Canadian dollar pared earlier session losses against its U.S. counterpart on Tuesday, strengthening after data showed January growth was better than feared. REUTERS/Mark Blinch/FilesMARK BLINCH/Reuters

The Canadian dollar closed at 75.39 cents (U.S.) on Friday, down 0.40 cents from Thursday.

The loonie was under pressure after a lacklustre Labour Force Survey was released from Statistics Canada. The jobs report shows employment in Canada was little changed in August. Last month, Canada added a mere 12,000 jobs or an increase of 0.1 per cent to the labour force. Despite the increase, national unemployment ticked up 0.2 percentage points to 7.0 per cent, as more people in Canada searched for a job.

The report will do little to "change the Bank of Canada's thinking ahead of its rate decision next Wednesday," said TD economist Leslie Preston in her commentary on the job numbers. Preston adds, "the bank has already cut interest rates twice to help cushion the blow from the downturn in the oil and gas sector, and we expect that as the economy returns to growth in Q3, it can sit tight with the overnight rate remaining at its current simulative level."  That would be good news for the Canadian dollar as another rate cut would put it under even more pressure.

The loonie was also dragged by lower oil prices.  West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude closed down 70 cents (U.S.) at $46.05 (U.S.).

Markets on both sides of the border will be closed on Monday to mark Labour Day. An announcement from the Bank of Canada on interest rates and a release Wednesday, from Statistics Canada, of key housing starts and building permits data for July could affect the Canadian dollar next week.


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