The U.S. dollar held steady at six-year highs against its Canadian counterpart on Thursday, after upbeat U.S. jobless claims data and as comments by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen continued to support.
USD/CAD hit 1.2950 during early U.S. trade, the session high; the pair subsequently consolidated at 1.2920.
The pair was likely to find support at 1.2722, Wednesday’s low, and resistance at 1.3063.
The U.S. Department of Labor reported on Thursday that the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending July 11 fell by 15,000 to 281,000 from the previous week’s total of 296,000. Analysts had expected initial jobless claims to fall by 10,000 to 285,000 last week.
The greenback also remained supported after Fed Chair Yellen said, in testimony before the House Financial Services Committee, that the Fed is likely to raise rates “at some point this year.” She added that the U.S. Labor market healthier but “still some slack.”
According to Yellen, the Greek debt crisis, as well as China’s recent economic woes, “pose some risks” to U.S. growth.
In Canada, data showed that foreign securities purchases dropped by C$5.45 billion in May, compared to expectations for an increase of C$10.23 billion. Foreign securities purchases rose by C$16.73 billion in April, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated C$12.94 billion gain.
The loonie was higher against the euro, with EUR/CAD retreating 0.48% to 1.4071.
The European Central Bank maintained its benchmark interest rate at a record-low 0.05% on Thursday, in line with market expectations.
The central bank also held its marginal lending at 0.30% and left its deposit facility rate unchanged at minus 0.20%.
Also in the eurozone, Greece’s parliament approved late Wednesday the bailout package presented by prime minister Alexis Tsipras.
Tsipras can now begin working with Greece’s European creditors to obtain emergency funding, in exchange for a series of economic reforms.