The Globe and Mail reports in its Friday, Oct. 28, edition that while the Bank of Canada may have stopped short of what markets were expecting with its latest interest-rate hike, it remains the most hawkish major central bank in the world, a status that until now has shielded the Canadian dollar against the worst of the rout felt by other currencies. The Globe's Jason Kirby writes in the Decoder column that the BOC, citing the potential for the economy to "stall" over the next three quarters, raised its benchmark rate 0.5 percentage point to 3.75 per cent on Wednesday, shy of the 0.75-percentage-point increase many had forecast.
The slower pace still left Canada's policy lending rate 3.5 percentage points higher this year, the steepest rate-hike cycle among central banks overseeing the 10 most-traded currencies, at least until the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate announcement next week.
The BOC's aggressive rate stance has provided a buffer against the sharp rise of the U.S. dollar. While the Canadian dollar has fallen about 5.5 per cent year-to-date against the greenback, that is the smallest decline among major currencies.
The BOC's policy divergence from the Fed is seen weighing on the Canadian dollar.
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