Loonie slides below 72 cents, down nearly half a cent since Dec. 24

TORONTO - The loonie was below 72 cents again Tuesday before the Toronto Stock Exchange began its first post-holiday session.

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The Canadian dollar was at 71.76 cents US, down 0.47 and about where it closed a week ago on Dec. 22 before a pre-holiday rally. It regained some strength over two days to close Thursday at 72.23 cents US, still near 11-year lows.

On equity markets, the Dow Jones index futures gained 77 points to 17,515.0, the S&P 500 futures advanced 7.80 points to 2,056.6 and the Nasdaq gained 21.20 points to 4,635.0.

The U.S. markets were open Monday while the Toronto Stock Exchanged was closed. Its S&P/TSX composite index last traded Thursday at 13,309.80.

On the commodity markets, the February crude contract was up 10 cents from Monday at US$36.91 per barrel, which was down from $38.10 on Thursday. The January contract for natural gas was US$2.27, up four cents from Monday and up from $2.03 on Thursday.

February gold contracts were at US$1,068.70, up 40 cents from Monday but down from $1,075.90 on Thursday.



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